Researchers share the results of their works with colleagues and the
public in a variety of ways. Early results are usually shared during
laboratory meetings, in seminars, and at professional meetings. Final
results are usually communicated to others through scholarly articles
and books. Public communication takes place through press releases,
public announcements, newspaper articles, and public testimony. Some
of these ways of communicating research results (i.e., of publication)
are well structured and controlled; others are informal and have few
Whether structured or informal, controlled or free ranging, responsible
publication in research should ideally meet some minimum standards.
All forms of publication should present:
- a full and fair description of the work undertaken,
- an accurate report of the results, and
- an honest and open assessment of the findings.
In assessing the completeness of any publications, researchers should
ask whether they have described:
- what they did (methods),
- what they discovered (results), and
- what they make of their discovery (discussion).
It is, however, not as easy as one might anticipate to meet these