Online appendices detailing the robustness of empirical analyses are paramount but they never let readers explore all reasonable researcher degrees of freedom. Simonsohn, Simmons and Nelson suggest a ‘specification curve’ that allows readers to eyeball how the main coefficient of interest varies across a wide arrange of specifications. I build on this idea by making it interactive: A shiny-based web app enables readers to explore the robustness of findings in detail along the whole curve.

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Researchers face many options when designing tests. The resulting researcher degrees of freedom are often not well documented in published work but highly influential for findings. My new in-development R package rdfanaylsis provides a coding framework to systematically document and explore the researcher degrees of freedom in research designs based on observational data.

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Author's picture

Joachim Gassen

Curious researcher, passionate teacher and coding nerd.

Professor of accounting at Humboldt-Universit├Ąt zu Berlin

Berlin