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Research Ethics

Nobel winner declares boycott of top science journalsThe Guardian 2013Randy Schekman (2013 Nobel laureate in Medicine) says his lab will no longer send papers to Nature, Cell and Science as they distort scientific process

How journals like Nature, Cell and Science are damaging science, The Guardian 2013. The incentives offered by top journals distort science, just as big bonuses distort banking, says Randy Schekman

China’s Publication BazaarScience 2013. Science investigation has uncovered a smorgasbord of questionable practices including paying for author’s slots on papers written by other scientists and buying papers from online brokers.

Scientific Discourse: Buckling at the Seams, Science 2013. The special issue of Science on publishing and peer review

Improving ERC Ethical Standards, Science 2013. “The proposal, submitted some years earlier to a funding agency on a different continent, was copied by one of the reviewers, a highly recognized scientist, and then submitted to the ERC”

Brazilian citation scheme outed, Nature 2013. Thomson Reuters suspends journals from its rankings for ?citation stacking?

The Seven Sins in Academic Behavior in the Natural Sciences, Angewandte Chemie 2013. This can be the handbook of research ethics

The Case of Yoshitaka FujiiNature 2012. 20 years of fraud including fabricated co-workers

Predatory Publishers and Plagiarism Prevention, Science 2012.

Honest work, Nature 2012. The plagiarism police deserve thanks for defending the honour of the PhD.

Coercive Citation in Academic PublishingScience 2012. Despite their shortcomings, impact factors continue to be a primary means by which academics ?quantify the quality of science?. One side effect of impact factors is the incentive they create for editors to coerce authors to add citations to their journal.

Citations and EthicsAngewandte Chemie 2012. Prof Jan Reedijk writes a brilliant essay on ?impact factor engineering?

The Road to Fraud Starts with a Single StepNature 2011. The extensive academic fraud of Diederik Stapel has rocked science. Social psychologist Jennifer Crocker traces the destructive path that cheats follow.

Dutch University Sacks Social Psychologist Over Faked DataScience 2011. A Dutch social psychologist whose eye-catching studies about human behavior were fodder for columnists and policy makers has lost his job after his university concluded that some of the data in those studies were fabricated.

Same story on Nature

Europe Tackles Huge FraudNature 2011. Regulators scramble to recover millions of euros awarded to fake research projects.

Collateral DamageNature 2010. An investigation at Harvard University highlights the human cost of scientific misconduct

Sabotage!Nature 2010. Postdoc Vipul Bhrigu destroyed the experiments of a colleague in order to get ahead. It took a hidden camera to expose a surreptitious and malicious side of science.

A Painful RemedyNature 2010. The number of papers being retracted is on the rise, for reasons that are not all bad.

China Looks to Purge Academia of ‘Trash Journals’Science 2011. In a country where low publication standards abound and every university or institute, it seems, has its own journal, the Chinese government is getting serious about raising standards and weeding out slapdash and irrelevant publications read by next to no one. The General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP) has begun rolling out a series of reforms aimed at boosting the prestige of Chinese publishing.

Plastic Fantastic: How the Biggest Fraud in Physics Shook the Scientific World A book by Eugenie Samuel Reich

Copy and PasteNature 2011. A slow university investigation into serious accusations of misconduct benefits no one.

Publish or Perish in ChinaNature 2010. The pressure to rack up publications in high-impact journals could encourage misconduct, some say.

Peers Nip Misconduct in the BudNature 2010. A new survey shows that informal intervention can often avert much irresponsible scientific behaviour, and is not as risky as people might fear

Under SuspicionNature 2010. When Nature or its sister journals receive serious allegations about data or author conduct, they follow a clear procedure to work out whether the published record needs to be revised.

Tie Funding to Research IntegrityNature 2010. A change in institutional culture is needed to promote responsible scientific behaviour and prevent misconduct. That’s unlikely to happen unless money is involved

Plagiarism Pinioned,  Nature 2010. There are tools to detect non-originality in articles, but instilling ethical norms remains essential.

Analysis of Retractions Puts Spotlight on AcademiaNature Medicine 2009. About half of the medical papers retracted over the past few decades were pulled because of misconduct rather than an innocent mistake, according to two new studies. And that fraction is on the increase.

Research Chief Steps Down over Fake DataNature 2009. Peter Chen’s integrity ‘undamaged’ by incident, says boss.

Bubble-Fusion Scientist Debarred from Federal FundingNature 2009. Office of Naval Research passes verdict on controversial researcher Rusi Taleyarkhan

Falsification Charge Highlights Image-Manipulation StandardsScience 2008. The University of Minnesota announced last week that an academic misconduct committee had concluded that a 2001 journal article contains “falsified” data images, but the paper’s lead author, a graduate student in prominent stem cell researcher Catherine Verfaillie’s lab at the time, rejects that claim and says she followed the standards of the time for handling images.

Deception and Dishonesty with Data: Fraud in ScienceSignificance 2007. The scientific community was shaken last year when leading stem cell and cloning researcher Woo Suk Hwang was accused of making up his results. He is not alone; Newton, Sigmund Freud and Nobel prizewinners have all been accused of being less than honest with data. David Hand looks at fraud in science and finds it is hardly rare.

How Many Scientific Papers should be Retracted?EMBO Reports 2007

After Finding Evidence of Plagiarism, PhD Student Fights BackUniversity of Michigan 2007. A fresh PhD finds out that his/her previous supervisor publishes parts of his/her thesis without informing

Scientists Behaving BadlyNature 2005. To protect the integrity of science, we must look beyond falsification, fabrication and plagiarism, to a wider range of questionable research practices

Phenomena of RetractionJournal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) 1998. Reasons for retraction and citations to the publications

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