What we’re reading: The predictive power of NSF grant reviewers, the peer-review sting, and more shutdown science

Reading a Book

In the journals

Goodman BA, L Schwarzkopf, & AK Krockenberger. 2013. Phenotypic integration in response to incubation environment adaptively influences habitat choice in a tropical lizard. The American Naturalist, 182(5): 666-73. doi: 10.1086/673299.

Using a split-clutch design, we incubated eggs at thermal regimes that mimicked the thermal environments of nests from two habitat types (forest = warm; rocky = cool). Hatchlings from cool incubation environments had longer limbs and greater running and climbing speeds, which are likely to be beneficial for rocky habitats.

Scheiner SM & LM Bouchie. 2013. The predictive power of NSF reviewers and panels. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 11: 406–407. 10.1890/13.WB.017.

Reviewer scores and panel rankings were moderately, but non-significantly, correlated with project outcomes (r = 0.12–0.29), but less so when analyzed by multiple regression. The sole predictive factor was award size for the number of publications (Figure 1; standardized coefficient = 0.64), a relationship consistent with other analyses …

In the news

This week in shutdown science: The CDC sits out an outbreak of drug-resistant salmonella, experiments on hold, lab mice euthanized and an entire season of Antarctic research cancelled.

Science commissioned a sting to test the peer review at open-access journals … but didn’t include a control group.

On the infamous two-body problem.

A big new study finds that papers reporting publicly available data get more citations.

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About Jeremy Yoder

Jeremy Yoder is an Assistant Professor of Biology at California State University, Northridge. He also blogs at Denim and Tweed, and tweets under the handle @jbyoder.
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