Are There Questionable Research Practices in Management Research?

erasure-1123441-mThe publishing industry can be competitive. But how far will a potential researcher go to achieve success? Farther than you would think, according to a forthcoming Journal of Management article entitled “The Chrysalis Effect: How Ugly Initial Results Metamorphosize into Beautiful Articles.”

The abstract:

The issue of a published literature not representative of the population of research is most often discussed in terms of entire studies being suppressed. However, alternative sources of publication bias are questionable research practices (QRPs) that entail post hoc alterations of hypotheses to support data or post hoc alterations of data to support hypotheses. Using general strain theory as an explanatory framework, we outline the means, motives, and opportunities for researchers to better their chances of publication independent of rigor and relevance. We then assess the frequency of QRPs in management research by tracking differences between dissertations and their resultingjom cover journal publications. Our primary finding is that from dissertation to journal article, the ratio of supported to unsupported hypotheses more than doubled (0.82 to 1.00 versus 1.94 to 1.00). The rise in predictive accuracy resulted from the dropping of statistically nonsignificant hypotheses, the addition of statistically significant hypotheses, the reversing of predicted direction of hypotheses, and alterations to data. We conclude with recommendations to help mitigate the problem of an unrepresentative literature that we label the “Chrysalis Effect.”

Leading author Ernest Hugh O’Boyle, Jr. and Journal of Management Associate Editor Fred Oswald discuss the article’s findings and the effects these findings have on management literature in a new podcast. You can listen to the interview for free by clicking here.

Read “The Chrysalis Effect: How Ugly Initial Results Metamorphosize into Beautiful Articles” for free from Journal of Management by clicking here. Want to know about all the latest from Journal of Management? Click here to sign up for e-alerts!

This entry was posted in Academy of Management, Careers, Change, Competition, Crisis Management, Ethics, Management Theory, Media, Peer Review, Podcast, Psychology, Publishing, Scholarship, Social Impact, Trust and tagged , , , by Cynthia Nalevanko, Editor, Management INK. Bookmark the permalink.

About Cynthia Nalevanko, Editor, Management INK

Founded in 1965, SAGE is the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. Known for our commitment to quality and innovation, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students across a broad range of subject areas. With over 900 employees globally from principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, and Washington DC, our publishing programme includes more than 560 journals and over 800 books, reference works and databases a year in business, humanities, social sciences, science, technology and medicine. Believing passionately that engaged scholarship lies at the heart of any healthy society and that education is intrinsically valuable, SAGE aims to be the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. This means playing a creative role in society by disseminating teaching and research on a global scale, the cornerstones of which are good, long-term relationships, a focus on our markets, and an ability to combine quality and innovation. Leading authors, editors and societies should feel that SAGE is their natural home: we believe in meeting the range of their needs, and in publishing the best of their work. We are a growing company, and our financial success comes from thinking creatively about our markets and actively responding to the needs of our customers.

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