Researchers benefit from having contrarians challenge their research: Opinion

Researchers should cultivate beneficial relationships with contrarians in order to ensure there is always a point of view in the room that challenges overconfidence, writes Gerd Gigerenzer. Gigerenzer writes that collaborative work between researchers has become more common. Having someone in the collaboration who openly questions the research can help reveal cognitive biases, explains the author, so it is beneficial to cultivate a research group that is open to criticism and includes a “contrarian” from a different discipline who works on the same topic. Additionally, Gigerenzer argues that these individuals should be located in the same spaces so that they have more opportunities to interact on a daily basis and build trust. “Contrarians shape the intellectual and social climate of a group,” writes Gigerenzer. “In turn, they shape the quality of its science.” Times Higher Ed (Acct. Req.) Note: Archived stories may contain dead links or be missing source links.

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