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Letter to the editor: law, behavior, and research design: a final note.

Authors
Boden-LI; Ozonoff-A
Source
Am J Ind Med 2010 Aug; 53(8):856
NIOSHTIC No.
20038303
Abstract
Oleinick and Zaidman [2010] suggest that assumptions are a defect in empirical analysis.We interpret their argument to mean that we [Boden and Ozonoff, 2010]-and by implication others-should not rely on untested assumptions nor should we use sensitivity analyses "to buttress results." Let us examine one assumption made in their response: that BLS reporting rates are the same for different types of cases "since reporting rules are the same for all cases." This assumption is critical to their calculations, but we see no reason for it to be correct. For example, we suspect that reporting for an injury involving only 2 days off work is not as likely as for one involving 4 weeks off work. Indeed, a primary motivation for studying reporting is to see if reporting rules are being followed. If these rules are in fact not being followed, then the level of reportingmay well depend on injury duration, injury type, conflict over benefit payments, and other factors. Empirical work, including ours and theirs, must rely on assumptions. Moreover, when a range of plausible assumptions cannot be tested in a particular study, it also seems appropriate to explore the sensitivity of results to alternate assumptions. Additional research can then be designed to determine whether such assumptions are warranted.
Keywords
Analytical-processes; Quantitative-analysis; Statistical-analysis; Workplace-monitoring; Workplace-studies
Contact
Leslie I. Boden, Department of Environmental Health, Boston University School of Public Health, 715 Albany Street, Boston, MA 02118
CODEN
AJIMD8
Publication Date
20100801
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
lboden@bu.edu
Funding Type
Grant
Fiscal Year
2010
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
Grant-Number-R01-OH-007596
Issue of Publication
8
ISSN
0271-3586
Source Name
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
State
MA
Performing Organization
Boston University, Medical Campus
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