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How (Not) to Reproduce: Practical Considerations to Improve Research Transparency in Political Science

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  16 September 2021

R. Michael Alvarez*
California Institute of Technology, USA
Simon Heuberger*
American University, USA


In recent years, scholars, journals, and professional organizations in political science have been working to improve research transparency. Although better transparency is a laudable goal, the implementation of standards for reproducibility still leaves much to be desired. This article identifies two practices that political science should adopt to improve research transparency: (1) journals must provide detailed replication guidance and run provided material; and (2) authors must begin their work with replication in mind. We focus on problems that occur when scholars provide research materials to journals for replication, and we outline best practices regarding documentation and code structure for researchers to use.

© The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the American Political Science Association

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