Electoral Insights (Part 2)

Following up on our last episode about how experiments can be performed in political science, now we explore a high-profile case of an experiment gone wrong. An extremely high-profile paper that was published in 2014, about how talking to people can convince them to change their minds on topics like abortion and gay marriage, has been exposed as the likely product of a fraudulently produced dataset. We’ll talk about a cool data science tool called the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test, which a pair of graduate students used to reverse-engineer the likely way that the fraudulent data was generated. But a bigger question still remains—what does this whole episode tell us about fraud and oversight in science?

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