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More science than you think is retracted. Even more should be – The Washington Post (Adam Marcus and Ivan Oransky | December 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on January 9, 2019

Adam Marcus, the managing editor of Gastroenterology & Endoscopy News, and Ivan Oransky, distinguished writer in residence at New York University’s Arthur Carter Journalism Institute and vice president for editorial at Medscape, are co-founders of Retraction Watch.

The fall from grace wasn’t exactly swift, but it was stunning. Among stem cell researchers, Piero Anversa’s work trying to regrow the human heart in the 1990s and 2000s was legendary. That was then. In October, his former institutions, Harvard Medical School and its affiliate Brigham and Women’s Hospital, asked journals to retract 31 of his lab’s papers. That followed an agreement last year by the Brigham and other hospitals to pay the government $10 million to settle claims that Anversa and a colleague used bogus data to obtain their grant funding.

As dramatic as the Anversa case is, he is far from alone. This month, Anversa’s lab saw 13 papers retracted, but even if all journals honor the retraction requests, he won’t crack the top 10 for scientists who’ve had their articles pulled from the literature. Neither does Cornell University’s Brian Wansink, the food marketing researcher — and former media fixture — who experienced a similar fall over the past few years. The dubious honor for most retractions goes to Yoshitaka Fujii, a Japanese anesthesiologist who fabricated his findings in at least 183 papers, according to a 2012 investigation launched by journal editors and Japanese universities.

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From Paywall to Datawall – Scholarly Kitchen (Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe | October 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on January 3, 2019

Almost every day, my email or Twitter feed brings an alert to a “free” report, article, white paper, etc. No payment or subscription required!

This isn’t a ‘core’ research integrity piece but we thought the privacy and research outputs issues are significant enough to warrant inclusion in the Resource Library

It sounds great. In many ways it is the promise of the Internet fulfilled, a world in which a single click brings you the document you are seeking for immediate review or even a deep read.

The reader experience, however, is quite often not exactly that. Instead of a paywall, perhaps to be negotiated through a proxy server or some other authentication mechanism, the reader is faced with a demand for their contact information. Or, even more demanding, they face a requirement to create an account. Use of that account will be tracked and the data fed into an analytics system, likely joined up with data collected elsewhere as well.

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Which kind of peer review is best for catching fraud? – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | December 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on January 2, 2019

Is peer review a good way to weed out problematic papers? And if it is, which kinds of peer review? In a new paper in Scientometrics, Willem Halffman, of Radboud University, and Serge Horbach, of Radboud University and Leiden University, used our database of retractions to try to find out. We asked them several questions about the new work.

Retraction Watch (RW): You write that “journals’ use of peer review to identify fraudulent research is highly contentious.” Can you explain what you mean?

Willem Halffman and Serge Horbach (WH and SH): The precise role of the peer review system has long been discussed. Two expectations of the system are more or less universally accepted: peer review is supposed to help improve the quality of a submitted manuscript and it is expected to distinguish between high and low quality work. However, there are quite a few expectations of the peer review system that are not as widely shared. These include expectations such as granting equal and fair opportunities to all authors (regardless of gender, nationality etc.), providing a hierarchy of the most significant published results, or detecting errors or outright fraud in submitted papers. Some claim that peer review cannot be expected to perform such functions, as it was never designed nor meant to do so. Others point out that the peer review and editorial system are increasingly remodelled to detect fraud, supported by recent developments such as text similarity scanners, image manipulation scanners or the establishment of editorial ‘integrity czars’. In addition, when new cases of misconduct come to light, the peer review system is often blamed for not filtering out the fraudulent research before it could enter the academic literature. Researchers talk about peer review as if we all know precisely what it is and what it is for, but there is actually quite some variation hidden under that general term.

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A new publishing approach – retract and replace – is having growing pains – Retraction Watch (Alison McCook | March 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on December 29, 2018

Many journals are adopting a recently developed mechanism for correcting the scientific record known as “retract and replace” — usually employed when the original paper has been affected by honest errors. But if an article is retracted and replaced, can readers always tell? To find out, Ana Marušić at the University of Split School of Medicine in Croatia and her colleagues reviewed 29 “Corrected and Republished Articles” issued between January, 2015 and December, 2016, noting how they were marked by Web of Science, Scopus, and the journals themselves. They report their findings today in The Lancet.

Retraction Watch: You found some inconsistencies in how articles are handled by journals and other databases. What were the most surprising and/or troubling to you?

Ana Marušić: The most troubling were a few cases of articles that were retracted because of an error and for which a corrected version was published. The journals published an accompanying notice about the reasons for retraction and republication, and some even published the article with the changes indicated. However, they kept the same DOI as for the retracted article. According to the indexing specialists, this is not the proper way of marking different versions of the published record. Therefore, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) considers such articles as retracted, instead of “corrected and republished articles,” which is one of the standard tags in PubMed. This means that, when you search for these articles, you will see them as “retracted articles” (written on a big pink banner at the top of the page), although the version that is recorded presents a valid piece of research.

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