No Mediation, No Publication?

A few years ago, a student asked me for help. “I have a great effect and need a mediator.” I understand the sentiment: no mediation, no publication! Unfortunately, we couldn’t come up with a good mediator. Some of the potential mediators seemed too close to the dependent variable, and others too close to the independent variable. None of them seemed to provide an insightful explanation for the process underlying the observed relation. Rather, these mediators were a re-description of the effect, with a slightly different terminology and measurement. When you don’t have a great mediator (and you’ve made a real effort to find one yourself or with others’ help), I suggest you just stick to the effect.  Make sure the effect is important and relevant and demonstrate it reliably across studies.

“Just a Thought ….from Bernd Schmitt”
Non-binding ideas for JCR authors.