Andrew Gelman (Columbia--Statistics) notes (here) that among statistics' three essential elements, "measurement, comparison, and variation," measurement receives short shrift. Why?
"Part of it is surely that measurement takes effort, and we have other demands on our time. But it’s more than that. I think a large part is that we don’t carefully think about evaluation as a measurement issue and we’re not clear on what we want students to learn and how we can measure this." To this I would add one additional practical aspect. For those conducting secondary analyses of data sets put together by others, most typically defer to measurement decisions already baked into data sets.
Regardless, when measurement goes awry, measurement error emerges and bad things happen.