Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Improving Public Access to Research in Parapsychology

Over the weekend I was tasked with researching material for a literature review on the perceptual-personality variables associated with poltergeist/RSPK focal agents - a task for which which I restricted myself to material that had undergone some form of peer review, and where either psychometric measures were employed or where the researchers had consulted with a clinician. I learned a lot from this exercise, most of which I will save the for article itself, but my greatest surprise was how much I had to rely on resources from the Proceedings of Papers presented at the annual conventions of the Parapsychological Association, or its more polished cousin - Research in Parapsychology in order to complete my task.

As the Executive Director of the Parapsychological Association spearheading an archive project in honor its 60th year, I have amassed nearly a complete collection of these resources over the last year thanks to donations from our members, and since roughly April of this year, I have been campaigning on Crowdrise for the funding needed to get them digitized and released to the public in the form of some sort of searchable database. At this point, we've only met about 1/3 of our funding goal. Another 5K or so will make this dream a reality.

So for now, this amazing resource sits in an office that only I have access to, and you betcha that I made good use of it for my lit review! In the end, roughly 1/3 of the resources that I examined came from papers in this archive - works that were peer-reviewed by members of the PA, but were never submitted for further publication. That may seem like a high proportion, but I was looking for a very particular thing.

How many other important research questions might to fit this profile? How many future students of consciousness research will be discouraged by their lack of access to the specialized libraries that currently hold this sort of collection when they try to ask similar questions?

A donation of $10 will digitize 100 pages of this archive, $25 will get you something fun in the mail, $60 and you'll get a thumb drive of archival material, $100 will make you a sponsor of the project. Help us get this research in front of everyone who needs it - whether they know it or not - once and for all.

Donate at Crowdrise today!