PsychFileDrawer.org is a tool designed to address the File Drawer Problem as it pertains to psychological research: the distortion in the scientific literature that results from the failure to publish non-replications. Most journals (especially high impact journals that specialize in publishing surprising findings that have low prior odds of being correct) are rarely willing to publish even carefully conducted non-replications that question the validity of a finding that they have published. Often the only people who learn about non-replications are those who happen to be "plugged in" to social networks that circulate this information in a fragmentary and inefficient way. Even textbook authors are rarely well informed about the replicability of the results that they report on, and may often rely upon results that are known to be dubious by those working in the area.
PsychFileDrawer.org allows users to upload results of serious replication attempts in all research areas of psychology--whether they succeeded or failed. The website is designed to make it quick and convenient to upload reports while requiring enough detail to make the report credible and responsible. The site also provides a discussion forum for each posting, allowing users to discuss the report (potentially allowing collective brainstorming about possible moderator variables, defects in the original study or in the replication attempt, etc.) and connect with others interested in the topic.
Broad usage of the website offers many potential benefits for the field:
- Greater awareness of which results are robust and which are not.
- Key resource for meta-analyses.
- Useful source of ideas about potential boundary conditions and moderator variables that may determine when an effect can be observed.
- Article-specific discussion forums connect people around the world who are interested in discussing replicability of specific findings.
- Instant Data-sharing (when you upload raw data from your replication attempt, these become freely available for anyone who would like to explore the data further).
- Private Article-Specific Networking Tool lets people discover who else may have had trouble replicating an article--without (yet) making a formal posting (see Tool for more details).
Please read our FAQ for more discussion on the site and its purpose.
This website was created by Hal Pashler, Sean Kang, Bobbie Spellman, and Alex Holcombe. The lead developer is Sorin Sodolescu and the graphic design was created by Brian Crooks.