The Journal of Behavioral Public Administration (JBPA) encourages open and transparent scientific research by subscribing to the Center for Open Science’s Transparency and Openness Promotion Guidelines (https://cos.io/our-services/top-guidelines/). Following these guidelines, specifically Level 1, JBPA encourages (but does not require) authors to provide open access to their data, to make their study materials available, and to pre-register their study design and analysis plan. For authors who take these steps, JBPA provides an open data badge, an open materials badge and/or a preregistration badge (as warranted) prominently on the published articles. The detailed information can be found here: the transparency policy.

All data can be posted online at the Harvard Dataverse of JBPA, a repository setup especially for studies published in JBPA. Study materials can be posted as a supplement on the JBPA website (in cases where these materials are to extensive they can be uploaded to JBPA’s Dataverse). Pre-registration and analysis plans can be implemented via the Open Science Framework, AEA Registry, EGAP, or any other open pre-registration repository.


Open data guideline (for authors):

To earn an open data badge, JBPA requires authors to upload their data and codebook to the Harvard Dataverse of JBPA or another institutional data repository. Authors can upload the plain data (such as csv, txt, xls) including a codebook, or the data with meta-information (variable descriptions) using formats such as .sav (SPSS), .dta (Stata) or .xpt (SAS). JBPA strongly recommends providing syntax/code together with the data so that analyses, tables and graphics can be reproduced. Once JBPA’s transparency editors have checked the uploaded material, an open data badge will be added to the author’s JBPA article.

To earn an open materials badge, JBPA requires authors to upload their study materials, such as interview protocols, experimental procedures, experimental interventions, or survey questionnaire, as a supplement to their JBPA article. In cases where these materials are to extensive they can be uploaded to JBPA’s Dataverse. Materials should be sufficient to allow readers to replicate the study without contacting the original authors. Once JBPA transparency editors have checked the materials, the open material badge will be added to the author’s JBPA article.

To earn a preregistration badge, JBPA requires authors to pre-register their research on an institutional pre-registration system (such as Open Science Framework, AEA Registry, EGAP) prior to data collection. The registered design should include (as appropriate): (1) an overview of the research design and method; (2) a statement of the research questions or hypotheses; (3) a definition of the analytical variables or measures; 4) a sampling and data collection plan (including eligibility criteria and power analysis); 5) a data analysis plan (including a specification of mediators, moderators, control variables, and any expected non-linear effects); and 6) relevant study materials. In the written article, authors should disclose which analyses are confirmatory (or ex-ante), and thus were planned before data collection, and which are exploratory (or ex-post). In this way, pre-registration does not restrict authors from reporting results of additional, exploratory analyses that were not planned but that may reveal potentially interesting or even unexpected findings.

Notations may be added to the preregistration badge as follows: TC, or Transparent Changes, means that the design was altered but the changes and rationale for changes are provided; DE, or Data Exist, means that registration postdates realization of the outcomes, but the authors have yet to inspect or analyze the outcomes.


Open data guideline (for readers):

JBPA supports open and transparent research by encouraging authors to provide open data, open materials and pre-registration of study designs and analysis plans. Badges on published articles indicate open data (published on the Harvard Dataverse of JBPA at https://dataverse.harvard.edu/dataverse/JBPA), materials, or pre-registration that can be accessed by the respective open repository cited in the article. Although JBPA encourages open data, materials and preregistration when feasible, the journal recognizes that institutional and ethical considerations often limit such practices. JBPA does, however, encourage all authors to note and discuss such limitations where appropriate.