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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

Top 10 Retractions of 2017 – The Scientist (Retraction Watch | December 2017)0

Posted by Admin in on March 12, 2018
 

Making the list: a journal breaks a retraction record, Nobel laureates Do the Right Thing, and Seinfeld characters write a paper 

When it comes to retractions, we at Retraction Watch always have a lot to say. Especially after spending much of 2017 building our retraction database, which now holds just shy of 16,000 entries—more than 1,000 from 2017 alone. That’s an increase from the 650 total retractions counted by MEDLINE in 2016.

We are big fans of Retraction Watch and this story reflects on the most notable retraction stories from 2017. A discussion of such cases are research integrity workshops can be a useful opportunity to talk about missteps and what they can do to academic careers and promising lines of enquiry.

Of course, scientific misconduct involves more than just retractions. This year, we reported on the loss of a frequently cited (but controversial) resource that deemed some journals “predatory,” the ongoing saga between a Harvard graduate student and his mentor that resulted in a forced psychiatric exam and a restraining order, and a university’s decision to pay a researcher found guilty of misconduct $100,000 to leave.
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There are also the stories about decisions not to retract—such as when more than a dozen editorial board members resigned from Scientific Reports after the journal decided to correct, not retract, a paper accused of plagiarism. (The journal eventually decided to add an editor’s note to the story and form a committee to review it.)
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But there were also plenty of retractions that caught our notice this year. Here are our picks of the 10 most notable retractons of 2017, in no particular order.

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Let’s End Reviewer Fraud – Publons (January 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on March 9, 2018
 

With a neutron star collision, the discovery of new planets, and the first gene therapy treatment approved in the United States, last year’s advancements in science and research offer a promising outlook for 2018.

But with retractions and fake reviews back in the spotlight, 2018 is also looking like it will be fraught with challenges.

On the 21st of December, the team at Retraction Watch reported Elsevier journals had retracted 13 research papers and will soon be retracting 13 more. The papers, most of which were published between 2014 and 2017, and share one corresponding author, were subject to “peer-review manipulation” and “unexplained authorship irregularities.”

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Allegations of Erasure – Inside Higher Ed (Colleen Flaherty | February 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on March 3, 2018
 

Scholar says a new book on China’s “leftover women” fails to acknowledge her years of research in the area — and the fact that both authors have corresponded on the topic since 2011.

Leta Hong Fincher, a well-known independent scholar of China, has been researching and writing about the country’s unmarried, educated, urban female population for years. The topic doesn’t belong to Hong Fincher alone, and Chinese even has a special term for this group of women over about 25: “leftover,” or sheng nu. But Hong Fincher is something of a pioneer in the area, and many colleagues consider her 2014 book, Leftover Women: The Resurgence of Gender Inequality in China (Zed Books), required reading.

A useful example of situations where the contribution of others needs to be acknowledged, even if they don’t meet the criteria to be listed as coauthors.

So Hong Fincher was surprised to find that a major new book, Leftover in China: The Women Shaping the World’s Next Superpower (W. W. Norton & Company), doesn’t acknowledge her at all in its extensive bibliography. And it’s more than a matter of ego: Hong Fincher says the book’s author, Roseann Lake, a journalist who now writes about Cuba for The Economist, has been following her work since 2011.
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Back then, Lake reached out to Hong Fincher saying she admired a recent article Hong Fincher wrote about sheng nu for Ms. magazine. Lake said she was in the early stages of writing a book about China’s leftover women and she wanted to interview Hong Fincher. Busy with graduate school at the time, Hong Fincher declined. But she said she eventually shared an unpublished conference paper and asked Lake to cite her if she used any of her ideas. Lake also attended talks and conferences where Hong Fincher was speaking when they both lived in Beijing, Hong Fincher said.
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University Under Fire For Off-The-Grid Herpes Vaccine Experiments – Kaiser Health News (Marisa Taylor | January 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on March 1, 2018
 

WASHINGTON — Southern Illinois University’s medical school has halted all herpes research, one of its most high-profile projects, amid growing controversy over a researcher’s unauthorized methods offshore and in the U.S.

This update doesn’t add much new to this shocking story (and we have included earlier reporting in the Resource Library), but this report offers an opportunity to reflect on the importance of institutions taking proportionate, firm but fair action when confronted with dangerous lone-wolf misdeeds.

SIU’s ethics panel launched a “full” investigation Dec. 5 of the herpes vaccine experiments by university professor William Halford, according to a memo obtained by Kaiser Health News.
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Halford, who died in June, had injected Americans with his experimental herpes vaccine in St. Kitts and Nevis in 2016 and in Illinois hotel rooms in 2013 without routine safety oversight from the Food and Drug Administration or an institutional review board, according to ongoing reporting by KHN. Some of the participants say they are experiencing side effects.
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The panel, known as the Misconduct in Science Committee, told SIU’s medical school dean that the inquiry should not only investigate the extent of Halford’s alleged wrongdoing, but also scrutinize “members of his research team,” according to the Dec. 5 memo obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request.
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