Monday, August 15, 2005

Does Peer Review Work?

An article in today's Boston Globe ("Flaws are found in validating medical studies") calls the efficacy of peer review into question. Investigators found that up to one-third of the journal articles they sampled contained significant potential flaws despite the peer-review process. As it happens, a world congress on peer review will convene next month in Chicago. Some have proposed changes in the peer-review procedure to enhance its reliability, such as paying the reviewers, dropping reviewer anonymity, or even publishing their comments. Thanks to Health Law Prof Blog for the pointer.


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Fed. R. Evid. 702: If scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education, may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or otherwise, if (1) the testimony is based upon sufficient facts or data, (2) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods, and (3) the witness has applied the principles and methods reliably to the facts of the case.