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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

It’s Time to Get Serious About Research Fraud – UnDark (Dalmeet Singh Chawla | July 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on August 3, 2020

Only a small fraction of research misconduct ever comes to light. Independent investigative bodies could remedy that.

IN 2016, Sophie Jamal’s career took a turn for the worse. The bone researcher and physician was banned from federal funding for life in Canada after a committee found her guilty of manipulating data, presenting fabricated evidence to investigators, and blaming a research assistant for the fudged data. She was also ordered to pay back more than 253,000 Canadian dollars she had received in funding from the Canada Institute of Health Research. Then, in March 2018, she was stripped of her medical license.

Two years later, Jamal is back on the medical scene. According to The Toronto Sun, her medical license was reinstated after she presented evidence to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario showing that her misconduct was a direct result of her long-term mental health problems. She can now return to practicing as an endocrinologist, as long as she doesn’t conduct clinical research and continues therapy for her mental health problems.

Whether it’s fit for Jamal to return to treating patients is a matter for medical bodies and institutions in Canada to decide. What’s true is that scientists guilty of research misconduct often get away with nothing more than a slap on the wrist — that is, if they’re even caught in the first place. A survey of more than 1,100 researchers at eight European universities published earlier this year found that a large amount of research misconduct goes unreported, with early-career researchers the least likely to blow the whistle.

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Guest article: Self-plagiarism in philosophy – COPE (M. V. Dougherty | July 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on July 20, 2020

A quip heard in the hallways of some philosophy departments goes like this: when someone publishes a new book, a colleague says, “Congratulations! So, what are you calling it this time around?” With every witticism, there is some level of truth; my professional discipline of philosophy has been somewhat sluggish in addressing the problem of self-plagiarism.

A thoughtful reflection on self-plagiarism/text recycling in philosophy.  We have included links to 14 related items.

The term self-plagiarism is a contested one, but it generally refers to cases where an author publishes an article a second time without disclosing the first (redundant or duplicate publication) or to cases where there is an excessive undisclosed re-use of some portion of one’s previously-published work (text recycling). Despite differing outlooks about what constitutes inappropriate textual reuse across fields, there is general agreement that in its more extreme forms, self-plagiarism generates three major problems. Each of these problems creates inefficiencies in both the production of knowledge and its transmission.”

First, self-plagiarism generates an illusion of research productivity, creating unfair advantages for self-plagiarists during competitive evaluations for grants, promotions, job offers, raises, and other perks, such as invited lectureships and conference plenary addresses. When publications are the coin of the realm, counterfeiters can profit at the expense of authentic researchers.

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COVID-19 research: pandemic versus “paperdemic”, integrity, values and risks of the “speed science” (Papers: Ricardo Jorge Dinis-Oliveira | April 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on July 11, 2020


This open access paper from April 2020 makes familiar arguments about the problem of junk science and COVID-19, but they are points worth repeating and we loved the first sentence of the abstract.  We have included links to 16 related items.

Scientific integrity is a learned skill. When researchers and students learn integrity in laboratories or in the classroom, they are empowered to use similar principles in other aspects of their lives. This commentary reviews the concepts related to scientific integrity at a time when science faces important challenges related to the increase(d) number of articles produced regarding research on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has ignited another parallel viral pandemic, with science ranging from robust studies to dishonest studies being conducted, posted, and shared at an unprecedented rate. A balance is needed between the benefits of the rapid access to new scientific data and the threat of causing panic or erroneous clinical decisions based on mistakes or misconduct. The truth is that the “scientific research has changed the world” but now, and more than ever, “it needs to change itself”. A pandemic with a “paperdemic” will be even more complicated to manage if it progresses in an uncontrolled manner and is not properly scrutinized.

SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19, research and academic integrity, peer review, pandemic, paperdemic

Ricardo Jorge Dinis-Oliveira (2020) COVID-19 research: pandemic versus “paperdemic”, integrity, values and risks of the “speed science”, Forensic Sciences Research, DOI: 10.1080/20961790.2020.1767754
Publisher (Open Access):

Historicizing the crisis of scientific misconduct in Indian science (Papers: Mahendra Shahare & Lissa Roberts | June 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on July 11, 2020


The Indian experience and recent approach is worth emulating.  National approaches should focus on institutions, structural incentives and only after that research culture.

A flurry of discussions about plagiarism and predatory publications in recent times has brought the issue of scientific misconduct in India to the fore. The debate has framed scientific misconduct in India as a recent phenomenon. This article questions that framing, which rests on the current tendency to define and police scientific misconduct as a matter of individual behavior. Without ignoring the role of individuals, this article contextualizes their actions by calling attention to the conduct of the institutions, as well as social and political structures that are historically responsible for governing the practice of science in India since the colonial period. Scientific (mis)conduct, in other words, is here examined as a historical phenomenon borne of the interaction between individuals’ aspirations and the systems that impose, measure, and reward scientific output in particular ways. Importantly, historicizing scientific misconduct in this way also underscores scientist-driven initiatives and regulatory interventions that have placed India at the leading edge of reform. With the formal establishment of the Society for Scientific Values in 1986, Indian scientists became the first national community worldwide to monitor research integrity in an institutionally organized way.

Scientific misconduct, fraud in science, research integrity, the Society for Scientific Values, India

Shahare, M., & Roberts, L. (2020). Historicizing the crisis of scientific misconduct in Indian science. History of Science