A Response to “Responsible Research Practices,” Part 12: Highest Standards

highdiveThis is an installment in an ongoing series on the American Academy of Religion’s recently released draft statement on research responsibilities.
An index of the
complete series (updated as each
article is posted) can be found here.

The thirteenth and final item included in the draft document reads as follows:

higheststandardsAt this point in the series there’s not really all that much left to say. For in my reading, there’s too little  specificity to the document’s claims to assist us in decoding its technical terms. So I’d argue that advocating that we “adhere to the highest standards” can’t, by definition, be operationalized.

Or better put, it can be operationalized, but in far too many ways, many of which will no doubt be contradictory. Continue reading