Etienne P. LeBel, Ph.D., Independent Meta-Scientist, Western University


I do research in basic and applied areas of meta-science. Within the basic area, I investigate the social psychology of social psychology (e.g., simulation work optimizing the efficiency and falsifiability of scientific research; developing new replication norms guided by social norms theory). I previously lead, a naturalistic study on methodological reporting practices in psychology that contributed to raising journal reporting standards. Within the applied area, I increase the cumulativeness and value of the Social Sciences by leading Curate Science, an effort to crowd-source the tracking and interpretation of replication evidence and analytic reproducibility of published findings.

My background is in social psychology where I primarily investigated prejudice and stereotyping, attitudes and persuasion, romantic relationships, and methodological issues in psychology research (e.g., metric calibration; levels-of-analysis problem; measurement issues related to replicability, hypothesis testing, and construct validity).

Submitted Papers

LeBel, E. P., Berger, D., Campbell, L., & Loving, T. J. (2017). Falsifiability Is Not Optional. Under review at Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. [PsyArXiv preprint]

Articles & Chapters (see for full list)

LeBel, E. P., & John, L. (2017). Psychological and institutional obstacles toward more transparent reporting of psychological science. Published in S. O. Lilienfeld & I. D. Waldman (Eds.), Psychological Science Under Scrutiny: Recent Challenges and Proposed Solutions. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons. [PDF] [Buy from]

Cheung, I., Campbell, L., LeBel, E.,...Yong, J. C. (2016). Registered Replication Report of Finkel, Rusbult, Kumashiro, & Hannon's (2002) Study 1. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 11, 750-764. DOI: 10.1177/1745691616664694 [PDF] [Finkel Commentary] [Blog post]

LeBel, E. P., Campbell, L., & Loving, T. J. (2016). Benefits of open and high-powered research outweigh costs. Forthcoming in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. [PDF] [PsyArXiv preprint] [Shiny App]

LeBel, E. P. (2015). A new replication norm for psychology. Collabra. [Article]

Aarts, A. A. ... , LeBel, E. P., ... , Nosek, B. A. (2015). Estimating the reproducibility of psychological science. Science, 349, aac4716 DOI: 10.1126/science.aac4716 [PDF]

Madurski, C.*, & LeBel, E. P. (2015). Making sense of the noise: Replication difficulties of Correll's (2008) modulation of 1/f noise in a racial bias task. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 22, 1135-1141. (*Student author) DOI: 10.3758/s13423-014-0757-4 [PDF] [SSRN pre-print]

Battista, C., Gauvrit, N., & LeBel, E. P. (2015). Madness in the method: Fatal flaws in triple-blind mediumship research. Published in M. Martin & K. Augustine (Eds.), The Myth of an Afterlife: The Case Against Life After Death. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press. [Buy on]

Campbell, L., Loving, T. J., & LeBel, E. P. (2014). Enhancing transparency of the research process to increase accuracy of findings: A guide for relationship researchers. Personal Relationships, 21, 531-545. DOI: 10.1111/pere.12053 [PDF] [SSRN pre-print]

LeBel, E. P., & Wilbur, C. J. (2014). Big secrets do not necessarily cause hills to appear steeper. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 21, 696-700. DOI 10.3758/s13423-013-0549-2 [PDF]

LeBel, E. P., & Campbell, L. (2013). Heightened sensitivity to temperature cues in highly anxiously attached individuals: Real or elusive phenomenon? Psychological Science, 24, 2128-2120. DOI: 10.1177/0956797613486983 [PDF] [Addendum] [Supplementary Materials]

LeBel, E. P., Borsboom, D., Giner-Sorolla, R., Hasselman, F., Peters, K. R., Ratliff, K. A., & Smith, C. T. (2013). Grassroots support for reforming reporting standards in psychology. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 8, 424-432. DOI: 10.1177/1745691613491437 [PDF] [Supplementary Materials]
†Initiative mentioned in New Yorker piece on cleaning up science.

LeBel, E. P., & Campbell, L. (2013). The interactive role of implicit and explicit partner evaluations on ongoing affective and behavioral romantic realities. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 4, 167-174. DOI: 10.1177/1948550612448196 [PDF]

Open Science Collaboration (2012). An open, large-scale, collaborative effort to estimate the reproducibility of psychological science. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 7, 657-660. [PDF]

Paunonen, S. V., & LeBel, E. P. (2012). Socially desirable responding and its elusive effects on the validity of personality assessments. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 103, 158-175. DOI: 10.1037/a0028165 [PDF] [Monte Carlo Syntax]

LeBel, E. P., & Peters, K. R. (2011). Fearing the future of empirical psychology: Bem's (2011) evidence of psi as a case study of deficiencies in modal research practice. Review of General Psychology, 15, 371-379. DOI: 10.1037/a0025172 [PDF]
†Research covered in Time magazine Ideas piece on trust in psychological research.

LeBel, E. P., & Paunonen, S. V. (2011). Sexy but often unreliable: Impact of unreliability on the replicability of experimental findings involving implicit measures. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 37, 570-583. DOI: 10.1177/0146167211400619 [PDF] [Monte Carlo Syntax]

LeBel, E. P. (2011). Metric calibration of psychological instruments: Utility and feasibility. Saarbrucken, Germany: LAP Lambert Academic Publishing. [Buy on] [PDF]

LeBel, E. P. (2010). Attitude accessibility as a moderator of implicit and explicit self-esteem correspondence. Self and Identity, 9, 195-208. DOI: 10.1080/15298860902979166 [PDF]

LeBel, E. P., & Gawronski, B. (2009). How to find what's in a name: Scrutinizing the optimality of five scoring algorithms for the name-letter task. European Journal of Personality, 23, 85-106. DOI: 10.1002/per.705 [PDF] [NLT Scoring Algorithm (SPSS Syntax)]

LeBel, E. P., & Campbell, L. (2009). Implicit partner affect, relationship satisfaction, and the prediction of romantic breakup. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 45, 1291-1294. DOI: 10.1016/j.jesp.2009.07.003 [PDF] [Partner NLT Scoring Algorithm (SPSS Syntax)]

Gawronski, B., & LeBel, E. P. (2008). Understanding patterns of attitude change: When implicit measures show change, but explicit measures do not. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 44, 1355-1361. DOI: 10.1016/j.jesp.2008.04.005 [PDF]

Gawronski, B., LeBel, E. P., & Peters, K.P. (2007). What do implicit measures tell us? Scrutinizing the validity of three common assumptions. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 2, 181-193. DOI: 10.1111/j.1745-6916.2007.00036.x [PDF]

Working Papers

LeBel, E. P., Borsboom, D., Hasselman, F., & Stahl, C. (2016). Overcoming experimental psychology's replicability problem by studying humans at the intra- rather than inter-individual level. Unpublished manuscript. [Working Paper]

LeBel, E. P., & Campbell, L. (2015). Bold conjectures meet open science: Accelerating theory development in social psychology by testing riskier predictions via pre-registration. Unpublished manuscript. [Abstract]

Tobin, C., & LeBel, E. P. (2014). Replication difficulties of Payne, Hall, Cameron, and Bishara's (2010) multinomial processing tree model of the affect misattribution procedure. Unpublished manuscript. [SSRN pre-print]

LeBel, E. P., & Stahl, C. (2013). Modeling mechanism heterogeneity in the affect misattribution procedure: A hierarchical latent-class multinomial processing tree model approach. Unpublished manuscript. [Working Paper]

Past Projects

Heterogeneity in Persuasion
Collaborators: Christine Madurski
While the average effects of influence strategies on behavior have been studied extensively (Cialdini, 2001), how particular individuals are influenced by such strategies has barely been examined, with a few exceptions (e.g., Kaptein & Eckles, 2011). The goal of the current project is to learn new insights about persuasion by examining the heterogeneity in how authority and consensus influence strategies influence different individuals differently. We will seek to understand the nature of such heterogeneity by examining whether stable individual differences (i.e., need for cognition, conscientiousness, need for closure) can help explain what discriminates individuals that are positively influenced vs. not influenced vs. negatively influenced.
[OSF Project page] [Working methods protocol]

Cross-Race Effect
Collaborators: Masahiro Toyama
The tendency for individuals to have better memory for in-group compared to out-group faces -- known as the cross-race effect (CRE) -- is a psychological phenomenon with potentially deleterious consequences for misidentified target individuals in legal contexts (e.g., eyewitness identification). Though the CRE is a well-established psychological phenomenon (citations), there is disagreement regarding theoretical explanations of the effect. The current investigation aims to add resolve to such theoretical disagreements of the CRE by examining the phenomenon at the intra-individual rather than inter-individual level, which is the dominant approach currently used in the field. By examining the phenomenon at the intra-individual level, we will be able to (1) determine the percentage of individuals who show a CRE, (2) identify factors that discriminate between individual who show vs. do not show the CRE, and (3) test competing theoretical models of the CRE at the intra-individual level (e.g., CRE may emerge in different individuals for different reasons), hence contributing a more nuanced theoretical understanding of the CRE.
[OSF Project page] [Working methods protocol]

Influence of emotions on moral judgments
Collaborators: Nathan, Kemper, Brian Earp, & Christine R. Harris
An important unresolved theoretical issue in the area of morality involves understanding the conditions under which emotions influence moral judgments. In one theoretical camp, emotions are expected to influence moral judgments incidentally via a carry-over process (Haidt, 2001) whereas other theorists expect emotions to influence moral judgments only if the experienced emotion is intrinsically related to the target moral act (Pham, 2007). The current project aims to contribute to this unresolved issue by testing the competing incidental versus intrinsic accounts at the within-person level rather than the between-person sample level as has traditionally been done. The intra-individual design will allow us to empirically determine (1) the % of individuals who exhibit an intrinsic effect (within-person interaction effect), (2) the % of individuals who exhibit an incidental effect (within-person main effect), and (3) the % of individuals who show neither effects.