STICERD Econometrics Seminar Series
Statistical Non-Signiﬁcance in Empirical Economics
Alberto Abadie (MIT)
Thursday 07 March 2019 14:00 - 15:30
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About this event
Signiﬁcance tests are probably the most common form of inference in empirical economics, and signiﬁcance is often interpreted as providing greater informational content than non-signiﬁcance. In this article we show, however, that rejection of a point null often carries very little information, while failure to reject may be highly informative. This is particularly true in empirical contexts that are fairly common in economics, where data sets are large (and becoming larger) and where there are rarely reasons to put substantial prior probability on a point null. Our results challenge the usual practice of conferring point null rejections a higher level of scientiﬁc signiﬁcance than non-rejections. In consequence, we advocate a visible reporting and discussion of non-signiﬁcant results in empirical practice. “It is usual and convenient for experimenters to take 5 per cent. as a standard level of significance, in the sense that they are prepared to ignore all results which fail to reach this standard ...” R.A. Fisher in The design of experiments (Fisher, 1935)
STICERD Econometrics seminars are held on Thursdays in term time at 14.00-15.30, ONLINE, unless specified otherwise.
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