Hutch News

BRI Series: Why research findings exhibit ‘decline effect’ July 11

Jonathan Schooler presents the next Biomedical Research Integrity Series lecture, ‘Unpublished Research Findings and the “Decline Effect” in Science,’ 2-3 p.m. in Pelton

July 5, 2011
Dr. Jonathan Schooler

Postdoctoral fellows and graduate students will receive ethics education program credit for attending Dr. Jonathan Schooler's presentation.

“Why do many published scientific effects appear to diminish with time?” It’s the question psychologist Dr. Jonathan Schooler will address at the next Biomedical Research Integrity Series lecture Monday, July 11.

Same-day presentations at Hutchinson Center, UW

Schooler, professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of California at Santa Barbara will present “Unpublished Research Findings and the ‘Decline Effect’ in Science,” 2-3 p.m. in Pelton Auditorium. He will give the lecture the same day, noon-1 p.m., at the University of Washington, Health Sciences Building, T733.
How to resolve the ‘decline effect’

Schooler’s research focuses on consciousness, memory, the relationship between language and thought, problem solving and decision-making. He will discuss the so-called “decline effect” that has been observed both in individual labs and in meta-analyses of published findings across research in biology and medicine. While some scientists dismiss the phenomenon as simple statistical self-correction, Schooler believes true causes are uncertain in absence of better access to unpublished scientific data.
Schooler will review a variety of conventional explanations (e.g. regression to the mean, publication bias) as well as more unconventional possibilities. He will argue that resolution of the decline effect will require open access to all research findings regardless of outcome.

A graduate of the UW, Schooler is the author or co-author of more than 130 scholarly articles, many of which have been featured in publications such as The New York Times, The New Yorker and Discover Magazine.

Ethics education credit

All at the Hutchinson Center and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance are welcome to attend the lecture. Postdoctoral fellows and graduate students will receive ethics education program credit for attendance.

For more information, contact Lee Strucker, Research Ethics Education Program manager, at, (206) 667-1247.


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