“Neuron” editor-in-chief kicks off SUCCESS career workshops

“Neuron” editor-in-chief kicks off SUCCESS career workshops

By Raleigh McElvery

The Marine Biological Laboratory’s summer lunchtime lecture series, SUCCESS, kicked off its fourth year on June 22 with a talk by Katja Brose, editor-in-chief of the journal Neuron.

SUCCESS presents speakers on an array of career-related topics and is designed to advance the professional development of both burgeoning and established scientists—from high schoolers and undergraduates to post-docs and faculty members. The talks are open to the greater Woods Hole research community; please preregister to attend.

Rae Nishi, director of the MBL Education Division, introduced the series. “I always like to start with the big picture,” Nishi said. “Today’s talk is all about what you’re doing in the laboratory, and what impacts your research may have from an editor’s perspective.”

Brose’s lecture, entitled “Tales from the Trenches,” unpacked the many facets of what is termed the “reproducibility crisis” in science. Due to the push to publish “flashy” results, the scientific community has become more focused on uncovering novel findings than on replicating previous experiments to ensure validity. Brose delineated the factors contributing to the reproducibility issue, then raised potential solutions and explained the implications for individuals entering science.

Brose advocated that scientists improve the reproducibility of their work by maintaining a clear record of research procedures and results, openly sharing data, and designing experiments that reduce bias. Emphasizing transparency, she suggested clearly defining each step of the scientific process in writing papers for publication. “Being right and being careful is just as important as being first,” Brose said. “Ultimately, the responsibility, rigor, and reliability of your own work rests on you.”

Photo: The SUCCESS talks are at noon on Wednesdays through July 27 (pick up lunch in Swope Cafeteria at 11:30 AM).