“Why Most Published Research Findings are False” Passes One Million Views


“The problem is when you come up with something really unusual, because there are hardly any standard venues for real innovation or out-of-the-box endeavors,” says Stanford University health policy researcher John Ioannidis about how “Why Most Published Research Findings Are False” landed in PLOS Medicine in 2005. PLOS Blogs has published an interview with Ioannidis commemorating his article’s status as the most read PLOS article of all time, surpassing one million views. His article presents evidence and statistical analyses to argue that across psychology and psychiatry, economics, and physicochemical sciences, “Simulations show that for most study designs and settings, it is more likely for a research claim to be false than true.”

“Moreover,” writes Ioannidis, “for many current scientific fields, claimed research findings may often be simply accurate measures of the prevailing bias.”

From One to One Million Article Views: Q&A with Author John Ioannidis  (PLOS Blogs, June 23, 2014)

Why Most Published Research Findings Are False (Ioannidis, John P. A. PLOS Medicine. August 30, 2005 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.002012)