The widely publicized study headed by Burnham contended that nearly 655,000 Iraqis had died because of the U.S.-led invasion and war in Iraq. “When asked to provide several basic facts about this research, Burnham refused,” the council said in a statement. It noted that the group’s Code of Professional Ethics and Practices calls for researchers to disclose their methodology when survey findings are made public so they can be independently evaluated and verified.
“Dr. Burnham provided only partial information and explicitly refused to provide complete information about the basic elements of his research,” said Mary Losch, chair of the association’s Standards Committee. The group made no judgment on whether Burnham’s findings were accurate but said his refusal to fully cooperate with the probe “violates the fundamental standards of science, seriously undermines open public debate on critical issues and undermines the credibility of all survey and public opinion research.”