Extraordinary claims: the 0.000029% solution
INFN, Sezione di Padova
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Published online: 29 May 2015
The five-standard-deviation threshold is an established standard for discovery claims in experimental particle physics; however, the criterion is an ad-hoc recipe with no solid foundations. In this report I discuss its origins and the issues it was designed to address, pointing out its shortcomings and the need for a more flexible approach to decide when a new observed effect should be taken seriously.
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2015
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.