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Roger Clarke's Meta-Analysis RFI

Roger's Request For Information on Meta-Analysis, of 14 July 2000

Roger Clarke

Version of 15 July 2000

© Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, 2000

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I sent a Request for Information to the ISWorldNet List on 14 July 2000. This document summarises the information provided by the community. It is part of a cumulative archive of research information solicited via ISWorld, maintained by Ron Weber.

My RFI contained a semantic confusion, and this needs to be clarified right at the outset.

I didn't realise it when I sent the RFI out, but the term 'meta-analysis' is used to refer to a quite specific statistical technique. What I'm interested in is a more general question. I've accordingly separated the responses into two sections:

The Request for Information

"I'm interested in applying meta-analysis to a particular research domain. In particular, I'd like to understand the methodological characteristics of studies that have been undertaken to date in that field.

"By meta-analysis, I think what I mean is:

a disciplined examination of published research, in order to identify commonalities and differences in method and/or content, to classify papers within a pre-determined taxonomy, or to abtract a new taxonomy

"But I just made that up: I expect that someone, somewhere, has come up with a far better description.

"Note that the term appears to be used in the social sciences primarily to refer to techniques for combining statistical data from multiple sources.

"I'm looking for:

"Of course, the term 'meta-analysis' may not be used in some of the important works, especially early ones; i.e. I want to use the ISWorld community to perform the kind of intelligent semantic search that conventional search-engines aren't (yet?) capable of ...

"As always, I'll consolidate the results into a web-page, and post the URL back to ISWorld.

"Thanks! ... Roger"

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Created: 14 July 2000 - Last Amended: 15 July 2000 by Roger Clarke - Site Last Verified: 15 February 2009
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