The most basic estimations and predictions all count on accurate data as the start point. People routinely use information generated by research to make decisions of all kinds. Heck, some even use it to advise other people. It’s assumed that researchers are experts in their fields, so should know what they’re talking about. But how do we know for sure that they’re using data, methodology, validation and interpretive tools properly?
As each specialty grows, interpretation of data increasingly leaves those outside the area of expertise struggling to understand. No matter which niche you or I are in, there’s little choice but to make more and more use of explanations from specialists – or people who report in their stead. Building in the protections needed to make sure the information is solid, beginning from the raw data stage through to the final interpretation, is a process who’s time has come.