Not all think tank reports are created equal…
Among the 20 think tank reviews NEPC published in 2011, several got a “thumbs up” from NEPC’s expert reviewers. In the carefully considered judgment of those reviewers, the authors did a good job of applying sound social science research principles. Such reports made a contribution to our overall knowledge about the topics they examined. Those reviews are fulfilling for us.
Other reviews described reports produced by think tanks that are worthless and mundane, wasting the reader’s time, obscuring what is already known, and contributing little if anything of value to the overall education policy discussion.
And then there were those special cases that shone through as prime exemplars of incompetent science. It is these marvels of multi-colored packaging garnished with impressive-looking footnotes, charts and appendices – these advocacy pieces cloaked in research panoply – that we illuminate with a particular type of recognition of merit: our annual Bunkum Award.
Watch the 2011 Bunkum Award Ceremony: