With the stakes in clinical research so high, today sees the launch of a new and much-needed way of reporting clinical trials
In tumultuous times, it is easy to miss the fact that science is undergoing a quiet revolution. For several years now, concerns have been peaking in biomedicine about the reliability of published research – that the results of too many studies cannot be reproduced when the methods are repeated. Alongside growing discontent, the scientific community has answered by driving forward a raft of open science reforms. From initiatives to making research data publicly available, to ensuring that all published research can be read by the public, the aim of these reforms is simple: to make science more credible and accessible, for the benefit of other scientists and the public who fund scientific research.
Today one of these reforms takes hold for the first time in clinical medicine: a new type of journal article called a Registered Report in which the journal commits to publishing clinical trials regardless of their outcome. This might sound like common sense – because that’s exactly what it is – but in the competitive world of science and academia it represents a significant departure from the status quo.