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Lost in Space: Design of Experiments and Scientific Exploration in a Hogarth Universe

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Dennis LendremORCiD, Dr Clare LendremORCiD, Dr David Woods, Ruth Rowland-Jones, Professor John IsaacsORCiD


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A Hogarth, or “wicked”, universe is an irregular environment generating data to support erroneous beliefs. In this paper we argue that development scientists often work in such a universe. We demonstrate that exploring these multidimensional spaces using small experiments guided by scientific intuition alone, gives rise to an illusion of validity and a misplaced confidence in that scientific intuition. In contrast, Design of Experiments permits the efficient mapping of such complex, multidimensional spaces. We describe simulation tools allowing research scientists to explore these spaces in relative safety.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Lendrem DW, Lendrem BC, Woods D, Rowland-Jones R, Burke M, Chatfield M, Isaacs JD, Owen MR

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Drug Discovery Today

Year: 2015

Volume: 20

Issue: 11

Pages: 1365-1371

Print publication date: 01/11/2015

Online publication date: 23/10/2015

Acceptance date: 29/09/2015

ISSN (print): 1359-6446

ISSN (electronic): 1878-5832

Publisher: Elsevier


DOI: 10.1016/j.drudis.2015.09.015

PubMed id: 26505134


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Funder referenceFunder name
Lonza Biologics
EP/J018317/1Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
EP/G018502/1Engineering Doctorate programme - Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council