“Misrepresentation,” “reckless disregard for basic scientific standards”: Hauser report reveals details of misconduct
Courtesy of a Freedom of Information Act request, The Boston Globe has a very good piece detailing what investigators found had actually happened in the Marc Hauser lab before the former Harvard psychology researcher resigned in 2011 and was found guilty of misconduct by the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) in 2012.
The Globe requested the 2010 report Harvard sent the ORI. Here’s a summary:
The 85-page report details instances in which Hauser changed data so that it would show a desired effect. It shows that he more than once rebuffed or downplayed questions and concerns from people in his laboratory about how a result was obtained. The report also describes “a disturbing pattern of misrepresentation of results and shading of truth” and a “reckless disregard for basic scientific standards.”
The Globe quotes key passages from the report:
“We did not find evidence that [professor] Hauser has been inventing findings out of whole cloth,” the committee wrote.
“. . . Hauser’s shortcomings in respect to research integrity have in the main consisted instead of repeated instances of cutting corners, of pushing analyses of data further in the direction of significance than the actual findings warranted, and of reporting results as he may have wished them to have been, rather than as they actually were.”
Meanwhile, Hauser is back publishing in the scientific literature, with a number of luminaries as co-authors.
Read the whole Globe report here.