SKAIPedia:Policies and Guidelines

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General principles

These policies and guidelines are not set in stone. If you think a policy is unclear, incomplete, or unhelpful, please start a discussion about revising it.

In several places, these policies and guidelines rely on a "you-know-it-when-you-see-it" approach. For example, we don’t try to define what an "academic paper" is or list all valid preprint repositories, with the expectation that in the vast majority of cases the distinction will be clear. The same goes for a "significant contribution" to an entry.

One of the most important rules that is set in stone is that you should never violate copyright. This includes copy-pasting tables, figures, or sentences from published papers.

Entry types and scope

An entry should fall into one of the following categories: (1) an overview of papers on a particular topic (overview-type entries), (2) an overview of a single paper (single-paper entries), or (3) an overview of a dataset (data entries). Replication attempts and paper comments can have their own single-paper entries, be included in overview-type entries, and be linked to in the single-paper entry for the paper that they replicate/comment on.

When starting an overview-type entry, consider roughly how many relevant papers exist on a particular topic and set the entry scope appropriately. For example, a single entry titled "Analysis of the minimum wage" is likely to be unwieldy for both contributors and readers, whereas "The effect of the minimum wage on low-skill employment" is more manageable. Try to keep the topic fairly narrow and use links to related entries to help readers navigate to other relevant pages. Finally, we value any and all of your knowledge, so if you can only complete part of an entry, by all means do so!

Entry formats

To facilitate contributions and make SKAIPedia easier to read, we have suggested entry formats for each type of entry. However, we recognize that deviations are sometimes warranted.

Sections of an overview-type entry should include the overall conclusions the literature has come to, followed by four sections that group papers as follows: (1) literature reviews on the topic; (2) published papers; (3) pre-prints/working papers; and (4) any other academic materials (e.g., RCT registrations). For these types of entries, we suggest that each paragraph beyond the overarching summary section begin with a citation of a relevant paper and then briefly summarizes that paper (i.e., each paper should be allocated no more than a paragraph). That will make editing and contribution by others easier. A good example is here.

For single-paper entries, the page name should correspond to the title of the paper and a full citation of the paper (including a link to it) should appear up top. The entry itself should consist of what could be called an extended abstract with pre-defined sections: (1) background, (2) methods, (3) results, and (4) conclusions. A good example is here. We encourage you to mention specific numbers and confidence intervals/standard errors whenever applicable.

Allowed sources

The only allowed sources on SKAIPedia are academic papers. The definition of "academic papers" includes brief research reports on original research, papers that are comments on other papers, replication papers, and pre-registrations, as long as they are published/posted in an appropriate manner (see below). Papers can be theoretical or empirical, use quantitative or qualitative methods, and so on. All fields of social science, broadly construed, are welcome.

Published papers must be in a journal indexed by Web of Science Master Journal List. Retracted papers are allowed but should be clearly marked as such (see form). If a paper is retracted after it appears in SKAIPedia, it should not be removed but rather marked as retracted.

Preprints/working papers must be posted in an official preprint/working paper repository (e.g., arXiv, SocArXiv) or part of an official working paper series (e.g., NBER Working Papers, CESifo Working Paper Series). Papers that are only available on authors’ websites and other non-permanent pages are not allowed.

Attribution for entries

There is currently no policy against listing your name as a contributor to an entry, if you have made a significant contribution to it. Keep in mind that contributions made by each user are visible in the history of each page. Simply starting a page, adding a reference, and minor edits do not constitute a significant contribution, and an administrator may remove your name from the contributor list in such cases. Therefore, consider whether your edits have substantially improved or expanded the entry before listing yourself as a contributor.

You do not have to list your name on any entry. If you have made a substantial contribution to an entry and want to list your name, please add it to the end of any existing contributor list. if you believe someone is abusing the attribution policy by listing their name, please start a discussion in the relevant talk page.

Conflict resolution

The first question to ask when a conflict arises is, does it need to be resolved one way or another? SKAIPedia is meant to reflect the current state of knowledge of the academic community which at times may involve viewpoints that are in conflict with one another. In such cases, reflecting that conflict accurately rather than attempting to eliminate it should be the contributors’ goal.

If the conflict is not of this nature and the guidelines and policies above are insufficient for resolving a conflict, the relevant parties should engage in discussion and, if necessary, amend the policies/guidelines of SKAIPedia based on mutual agreement. If agreement cannot be reached, we will attempt to engage the broader community in discussion and possible vote on the issue.