Academic journal article Political Research Quarterly

A Note from the Editors

Academic journal article Political Research Quarterly

A Note from the Editors

Article excerpt

This issue appears one month before many political science journals formally implement the Data Access and Research Transparency (DA-RT) initiative. We would like to take this opportunity to share with readers our editorial team's decision not to implement DA-RT policies. Over the past twelve months, we have attended a meeting for journal editors that was convened by proponents of the DA-RT initiative at the American Political Science Association meeting in 2015 and a panel organized by scholars voicing significant concerns about it at the Western Political Science Association (WPSA) meeting in 2016. We hosted our own discussion of DA-RT, also at WPSA; closely followed published debates about the initiative; and discussed it with one another on multiple occasions at our weekly meetings.

Our decision reflects our commitment to the values of the WPSA, our parent organization, which, since its inception in 1948, has emphasized methodological pluralism and inclusivity. We share many of our colleagues' concerns about the undue burdens DA-RT may place on some scholars, for example, those at the beginning of their careers and those who work at institutions where resources are scarce. We share their concerns about possible negative unintended consequences, such as disincentivizing the significant work that is involved in collecting new empirical evidence, rather than relying on existing data sets. And we share their concerns that despite the good intentions of its proponents, DA-RT contributes to the marginalization of some forms of theoretical and qualitative research in political science, work we regard as no less vital to the discipline than the quantitative study of politics. …

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