‘We need failed research’

‘We need failed research’

Av Forskerforum

Publisert 5. oktober 2021 kl. 13:34

The monograph still has its proponents. One of them is Professor Emeritus Leiv K. Sydnes of the University of Bergen. His central argument is that the monograph gives room to discuss all research results – including negative ones, which are often left out of research articles.

‘If the student performs the experiment and everything goes as expected, is that research? No, that only happens when one fails and has to look for explanations. I think 50-50 successful and failed research is a good distribution,’ he says.

Lars Tjelta Westlye at the University of Oslo agrees: ‘It provides more room to go in-depth, which is a good thing for negative results.’

He adds, ‘I think we should rather accommodate for the publishing of negative results in general. To put it bluntly: If you want to ensure that research results never see the light of day, then write a dissertation. To change this, we need to look at the whole process and what is needed to get an article published, and not least where prestige in research comes from,’ says Westlye.