Liz Stuart writes: I am writing to solicit ideas for how we might measure a particular type of political environment, relevant to school districts’ likelihood of participating in federal evaluations (funded by the US Department of Education) of education programs. This is part of a larger project investigating external validity and the generalizability of results […]
Does a professor’s intervention in online discussions have the effect of prolonging discussion or cutting it off?
Usually I don’t post answers to questions right away, but Mark Liberman was kind enough to answer my question yesterday so I think I should reciprocate. Mark asks: I’ve been playing around with data from Coursera transaction logs, for an economics course and a modern poetry course so far. For the Modern Poetry course, where […]
Tenure track faculty opening at the Center for the Promotion of Research Involving Innovative Statistical Methodology, with Jennifer Hill, Marc Scott, and other world-class researchers. It looks like a great opportunity.
Guido Imbens and I write: The statistical and econometrics literature on causality is more focused on “effects of causes” than on “causes of effects.” That is, in the standard approach it is natural to study the effect of a treatment, but it is not in general possible to define the causes of any particular outcome. […]
Hal Pashler wrote in about a recent paper, “Labor Market Returns to Early Childhood Stimulation: a 20-year Followup to an Experimental Intervention in Jamaica,” by Paul Gertler, James Heckman, Rodrigo Pinto, Arianna Zanolini, Christel Vermeerch, Susan Walker, Susan M. Chang, and Sally Grantham-McGregor. Here’s Pashler: Dan Willingham tweeted: @DTWillingham: RCT from Jamaica: Big effects 20 […]
Sports researcher Dave Berri had a disagreement with a remark in our recent discussion of Malcolm Gladwell. Berri writes: This post [from Gelman] contains the following paragraph: Similarly, when Gladwell claimed that NFL quarterback performance is unrelated to the order they were drafted out of college, he appears to have been wrong. But if you […]
This one is fun because I have a double conflict of interest: I’ve been paid (at different times) both by Google and by Microsoft. Here’s the story: Microsoft, September 2012: An independent research company, Answers Research based in San Diego, CA, conducted a study using a representative online sample of nearly 1000 people, ages 18 […]
Discussion with Dan Kahan on political polarization, partisan information processing. And, more generally, the role of theory in empirical social science
It all began with this message from Dan Kahan, a law professor who does psychology experiments:
When I was a kid I took a writing class, and one of the assignments was to write a 1-to-2 page story. I can’t remember what I wrote, but I do remember the following story from one of the other kids. In its entirety: I snuck into this pay toilet and I can’t get out! […]
James Robins, Tyler VanderWeele, and Richard Gill write: Neyman introduced a formal mathematical theory of counterfactual causation that now has become standard language in many quantitative disciplines, but not in physics. We use results on causal interaction and interference between treatments (derived under the Neyman theory) to give a simple new proof of a well-known […]