Articles Jens Förster investigated

2 June 2015

On request by the University of Amsterdam, three independent statistical experts have conducted a follow-up investigation into the work of social psychologist Jens Förster. The experts have found strong evidence for ‘low veracity’ in the results of various publications.

After conducting an extensive statistical analysis, the experts conclude that many of the experiments described in the articles show an exceptionally linear link. This linearity is not only surprising, but often also too good to be true because it is at odds with the random variation within the experiments.

The authors classify the investigated publications into three categories: publications with strong, unclear or no statistical evidence for low veracity.

Of the investigated articles, eight fall within the first category: strong statistical evidence for low veracity. Three articles fall within the second category and four articles in the last.

The investigation follows an earlier enquiry into Förster’s work, and three articles in particular. This led the dean of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences and the board of the department of Psychology to ask the UvA’s Executive Board to commission a follow-up fact-finding investigation into Förster’s work during his term of appointment at the UvA. 

The journals in which the eight articles in the first category and the three articles in the second category have been published, will be sent a copy of the report with respectively a request to retract the articles or to consider doing so. The dissertation articles supervised by Jens Förster will also be investigated.

Published by  UvA Persvoorlichting