October 12, 2014

9:17 PM | You’re not rehabilitated if you keep deceiving.
Regular readers will know that I view scientific misconduct as a serious harm to both the body of scientific knowledge and the scientific community involved in building that knowledge. I also hold... -- Read more on

October 10, 2014

5:51 PM | Grappling with the angry-making history of human subjects research, because we need to.
Teaching about the history of scientific research with human subjects bums me out. Indeed, I get fairly regular indications from students in my “Ethics in Science” course that reading... -- Read more on

October 01, 2014

2:00 AM | Adjudicating “misbehavior”: how can scientists respond when they don’t get fair credit?
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I recently gave a talk at UC – Berkeley’s Science Leadership and Management (SLAM) seminar series. After the talk (titled “The grad student, the... -- Read more on
1:30 AM | Communicating with the public, being out as a scientist.
In the previous post, I noted that scientists are not always directly engaged in the project of communicating about their scientific findings (or about the methods they used to produce those... -- Read more on

September 30, 2014

8:42 PM | Absolute and Relative Freedoms Are "Horses of a Different Color"
I read and enjoyed B. F. Skinner's (1971) bestselling book Beyond Freedom and Dignity. I believe there is no such thing as absolute freedom, which is the meaning of freedom often associated with the use of the term: "free will." By claiming the existence of a "free will," Catholic writers escaped the argument that God cannot possibly be all good and all powerful when evil events occur. Independent of God's will, man, as they said, had the will to determine his own actions and then then the […]
4:40 PM | Are scientists who don’t engage with the public obliged to engage with the press?
In posts of yore, we’ve had occasion to discuss the duties scientists may have to the non-scientists with whom they share a world. One of these is the duty to share the knowledge they’ve... -- Read more on
1:00 PM | Eight types of schizophrenia? Not so fast…
Editor’s note: this guest post was contributed by ten leading psychiatric geneticists (see author list at the end of the post) in response to the headline-grabbing claims of a recent paper claiming to have identified eight genetic sub-types of schizophrenia. Similar text has also been posted on PubMed Commons and elsewhere. [DM] In a study […]

September 28, 2014

1:31 AM | Cable Guy Avoids More Bumps on the Head: A Behavior Analysis
So the internet cut out and Verizon took ten minutes to answer the phone after they put me on hold and after I pressed so many wrong buttons trying to find someone who could answer my question.* A computerized lady interrupted the lovely music and said they were recording the call. Then the tech-support guy answered and I told him I would also be recording. He said, "We don't allow customers to record our calls," and he hung up the phone.Then I called back and waited again. As soon as I reached […]

September 26, 2014

7:22 PM | Doing science is more than building knowledge: on professional development in graduate training.
Earlier this week, I was pleased to be an invited speaker at UC – Berkeley’s Science Leadership and Management (SLAM) seminar series. Here’s the official description of the program:... -- Read more on
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