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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

India cracks down on plagiarism at universities – Science (Shekhar Chandra | August 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on August 15, 2018

But some researchers say new rules don’t go far enough.

India has for the first time introduced regulations to detect and punish acts of plagiarism at universities. Punishments for researchers or students caught breaking the rules range from requiring that a manuscript be withdrawn to sacking or expulsion, depending on the extent of the plagiarism.

The regulations define plagiarism as “taking someone else’s work or idea and passing them as one’s own”, and will apply to the 867 universities and their affiliated institutions that report to the nation’s education regulator, the University Grants Commission (UGC). The UGC announced on 3 August that the rules came into effect retroactively from 23 July.

Previously, punishments for researchers caught plagiarizing were left to the discretion of the institution. The new rules also make it mandatory for institutions to use plagiarism-detection software, such as Turnitin, on students’ theses and researchers’ manuscripts. Currently, only some universities use detection software.

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Inside India’s fake research paper shops: pay, publish, profit – The Indian EXPRESS (Shyamlal Yadav | July 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on August 15, 2018

Despite UGC blacklist, hundreds of ‘predatory journals’ thrive, cast shadow on quality of faculty and research nationwide.

In the world of academia, getting published in an international research journal is almost the holy grail, it helps bump up the CV for hiring and helps in the competition for tenure or promotion. It takes rigorous research, an original contribution, exhaustive peer or expert reviews, and dogged persistence.

But then, there’s also an easy way — pay and publish.

An investigation by The Indian Express shows that India has emerged as one of the biggest markets for a business in which over 300 publishers manage what are called “predatory journals” that claim to be international and publish papers for a listed “charge” or “fee” that ranges from $30-$1,800 per piece.

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Deception, distrust and disrespect – Karolinska Institutet: President’s Blog (Ole Petter Ottersen | May 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on August 13, 2018

Recently a person with the name Lars Andersson published an article on HPV vaccination in the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics. The title page (now revised by the editor) stated that the author was affiliated with Karolinska Institutet. When the article was brought to our attention we quickly concluded that no such affiliation exists. This person is not employed by KI, nor associated with KI in any other capacity.

If the reported details are correct this is a disturbing example of deceptive practice and it seems more sooty than grey and definitely a problem that could be detected by editors prior to publication.

At first glance this is primarily a story about deception – about a person that abuses the name and status of a leading university to get his article into a peer-reviewed journal. And yes, Lars Andersson turns out to be a pseudonym. We do not know the identity of this person that falsely claims to be a researcher at KI.
So is this just a story about a willful deception on the part of a single, yet unidentified person?

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(US) Controversial alcohol study cancelled by US health agency – Nature (Sara Reardon | June 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on August 11, 2018

The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has terminated a controversial US$100-million study examining whether drinking small amounts of alcohol every day can improve health.

Further news about this now closed controversial study into alcohol consumption. Based on the allegations in the media you are left wondering what the various parties were thinking? This case could be used in professional development workshops to highlight how conflicts of interest can completely undermine the credibility of a project, the line of enquiry and those involved in a project.

The agency’s decision, announced on 15 June, came shortly after an NIH advisory council voted unanimously to end the trial. An agency investigation had found that NIH staff and outside researchers acted inappropriately by soliciting industry funding and biasing the grant-review process to favour specific scientists.
Those findings would have undermined the study’s credibility if it had been allowed to proceed, said NIH director Francis Collins at the advisory-council meeting. “Is it even possible at this point that the results of this trial would have the credibility to influence anyone’s decision-making?” he asked. “That does in fact seem quite doubtful.”
The study, which began enrolling participants in February 2018 under the auspices of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), included $67 million from 5 alcohol companies over 10 years. It came under fire in March after the New York Times reported that the study’s lead investigator — cardiovascular researcher Kenneth Mukamal of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts — and his collaborators had directly courted funding from the liquor industry in 2013 and 2014, before the study’s launch.

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