Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Protocol X

I might have misunderstood the reference to "Protocol X" in the Panton Principles. If people want a real protocol, here is my contribution:

  • All data MUST be obtained in such a way that it it can be communicated to other people if necessary, even if, by its nature or by local legal restrictions, it cannot be published.
  • All data, including "negative" data, MUST be recorded in a permanent form as soon as is reasonably possible. The record SHOULD, as a minimum, include the date on which the data was collected and (if different) the date on which it was recorded.
  • All data MUST be made available to external assessors, so long as any necessary conditions of confidentiality are met, and subject to local legal restrictions.
  • Publication of a scientific paper implies making all the data needed to prepare the paper available to external assessors, under conditions of confidentiality where necessary. It also implies making all non-confidential data available to the general public for any use.
  • It is implicit that scientific practice forbids the publication of partial data (and the concurrent interpretation) when the authors have data which would contradict that interpretation.

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