In the news about the coronavirus pandemic we often read that “research has shown” some or other aspect of the virus and the disease. For example, since the first quarter of this year research has been reported to have shown that many carriers of the virus are asymptomatic, that the virus can survive in the air, that the virus can survive for hours or even days on surfaces, depending on the surface type and other factors, etc. Many things are reported to have been discovered by such “research”.
Now, my question is this: what kind of research are we talking about here? Surely we are not talking about peer-reviewed research of the medical community, published in academic journals? If we are, which are those journals? Where are those research papers? I’m not talking about news articles mentioning “research”, I am talking about the research reports themselves.
I ask because I would really like to know how scientifically reliable all this alleged “research” is. I find it puzzling that some of it appears to have yielded very definite, strong, quantitative statements about things that I would expect to be fairly difficult to investigate even qualitatively, and even more difficult to make stand up to scientific standards of reproducibility, statistical significance, etc. I’m not saying it’s impossible, but I am saying that it’s puzzling that so many strong statements based on “research” have been forthcoming in only a few months.