Scientists have been caught manipulating data too many times. They must mend their ways before they lose public’s trust — Quartz
“When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure.” Sociologist Donald Campbell and economist Charles Goodhart reached this conclusion some 40 years ago, after analyzing the measures affecting their own professions.
We’ve seen the Campbell and Goodhart law in action plenty of times. Bankers manipulated Libor, a benchmark for borrowing rates, to profit from trades. Businessmen use assorting accounting metrics to artificially inflate the value of their firms. Facebook has just admitted to overestimating how much video its users watch (paywall), meaning that advertisers have been overpaying.
Now it appears even scientists, among the most trusted professionals in the world, have fallen to abusing metrics.