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Not all pre-registrations are equal

Waldron, Sophie; Allen, Christopher

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Sophie Waldron
Post Doctoral Research Associate

Dr Chris Allen
Post Doctoral Research Associate


There is growing recognition that troubling numbers of experiments fail to replicate in fields relevant to Neuropsychopharmacology, from neuroimaging [1] to animal behaviour [2]. We believe a counteraction to this, led by pharmacology, is increased emphasis on the distinction between exploratory and confirmatory scientific practices [3]. Exploratory research, where multiple methodologies and analyses are trialled, is vital for discovery. In contrast, confirmatory research requires that this flexibility is minimised to address a well-specified research question. We aim to highlight problems that arise when this boundary is blurred, and how a new vista of publishing formats generally help by nailing down this distinction. However, some formats can allow problematic flexibility to re-enter under a confirmatory guise.


Waldron, S., & Allen, C. (2022). Not all pre-registrations are equal. Neuropsychopharmacology, 47(13), 2181-2183.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 28, 2022
Online Publication Date Aug 18, 2022
Publication Date 2022-12
Deposit Date Sep 15, 2022
Publicly Available Date Mar 15, 2023
Journal Neuropsychopharmacology
Print ISSN 0893-133X
Electronic ISSN 1740-634X
Publisher Springer Nature
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 47
Issue 13
Pages 2181-2183
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Published Journal Article (952 Kb)

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