Ethics of Open Data and Informed Decision Making

Jeff Helzner has posted on open data and the PGR, which links to an interesting non-technical article on the ethics of sharing data by the Columbia statistician, Andrew Gelman, wherein he writes

The ethics of a decision depend on one’s state of knowledge. In this case [discussed in the article], I would not blame a team of insufficiently trained researchers for a weak but conventional statistical analysis—but I do blame the principal investigator for violating the principle of openness in scientific research. This is hardly an ethical lapse on the scale of tobacco executives who commissioned research studies and then buried their findings, but it is something statisticians must always be aware of: Do not be so tied to your analyses that you are afraid that others might, with the same data, find something different.

Comments

Ethics of Open Data and Informed Decision Making — 1 Comment

  1. No one else is commenting on this, but the answer here for the PGR is straightforward. I rate for the report, as do many other contributors here, and the terms of agreement under which we volunteered don’t allow such disclosure.

    More generally, I will insist in the future that disputes between contributors to CD and various other members of the profession be kept off of this blog. And I’m closing comments on this thread as well.