Dennis M. Gorman BITSS CatalystPublic Health

Dennis M. Gorman is a professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the School of Public Health, Texas A&M University. He was trained in medical sociology in Great Britain, and received his PhD from the University of Essex in 1988. He became interested in issues pertaining to research integrity when introduced to the work of Karl Popper while a master’s student at Bedford College, University of London. Gorman began applying ideas such as falsification and critical rationalism to the analysis of drug prevention programs in the mid-1990s and has continued to work on this topic for over 20 years. The main contention of his work is that the evidence base of drug prevention research is comprised predominantly of chance, non-reproducible results. Gorman has also argued that the various lists of evidence-based drug prevention programs that have appeared since the early 2000s have had a detrimental effect on the quality of research in the field of drug prevention research in that they have further encouraged the use of flexible data analysis practices and distorted reporting. In recent years, he has become interested in using systems methods to better understand the dynamics (in the form of organizational and professional incentives) that drive the use of flexible data analysis practices and distorted reporting of results and to conduct simulated experiments of the potential effects of proposed solutions such as open data and open methods.