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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

Oft-quoted paper on spread of fake news turns out to be…fake news – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | January 2019)0

Posted by Admin in on February 20, 2019
 

The authors of an much-ballyhooed 2017 paper about the spread of fake news on social media have retracted their article after finding that they’d botched their analysis.

Sometimes the irony of a forced retraction is too delicious to ignore. The story is also a painful reminder of why researchers need to triple check the data and analysis, then check it again. The career damage retractions, even self retractions, is too serious to risk.

The paper, “Limited individual attention and online virality of low-quality information,” presented an argument for why bogus facts seem to gain so much traction on sites such as Facebook. According to the researchers — — from Shanghai Institute of Technology, Indiana University and Yahoo — the key was in the sheer volume of bad information, which swamps the brain’s ability to discern the real from the merely plausible or even the downright ridiculous, competing with limited attention spans and time.
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As they reported:
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Our main finding is that survival of the fittest is far from a foregone conclusion where information is concerned.
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Supervision and HDR candidate research outputs (Resource material: Griffith University | June 2018) UPDATED 14/02/190

Posted by Admin in on February 13, 2019
 

[This resource paper has been updated to reflect: the release of the Australian Code (2018); the release of the Griffith University Responsible Conduct of Research policy; changes to the NHMRC and Griffith University websites; and refreshing some of the links. Full disclaimer AHRECS senior consultant Dr Gary Allen co-authored this document.].
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Griffith University has produced a resource paper for HDR supervisors about HDR candidate research outputs titled Planning for success and avoiding pitfalls. This work is licensed under an Attribution CC BY Version 4.0 International licence. You are free to use this work as long as you reference as follows: This document based upon a resource created at Griffith University.

The resource paper (principally produced by Dr Gary Allen) includes the following sections:

1.0 Defining authorship
2.0 Advantages of co-authorship
3.0 National and Griffith University policy frameworks
4.0 International guidelines
5.0 Who can/should be listed as authors for a candidate’s research outputs?
6.0 Order of authorship
7.0 Publication Plan
8.0 Publication Ethics
9.0 Conflicts of Interest
10.0 Selecting a Publisher
11.0 Collegiate discussion but prudent practice
12.0 Sources of advice
13.0 Specialist Workshops
A list of tips
Links to further resources
It includes recommended further reading

 

 

Tips for negotiating the peer-reviewed journal publication process as an early-career researcher – LSE Impact Blog (Margaret K. Merga, et al | November 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on February 13, 2019
 

Early-career researchers are subject to higher levels of scrutiny than ever before, with publication in academic journals essential to how they are funded and evaluated, and how their careers will be built. Margaret K. Merga, Shannon Mason and Julia E. Morris share insights from their own experiences of navigating the journal submission and publication process as ECRs, emphasising the importance of being strategic about journal selection, understanding which suggested revisions will actually improve a paper, and knowing what is the right moment to contact the editor for guidance.

This LSE Impact Blog piece provides another set of valuable tips for ECRs, in areas that are often not addressed by institutional professional development.  We have included a collection of other related handy items.

Publishing in quality peer-reviewed journals is essential for early-career researchers (ECRs), due to their need to build a track record and expertise in their field. ECRs are subject to higher levels of scrutiny than ever before, with our contributions quantified through performance measurement indicators which may fail to adequately capture their scope, the efforts applied, and our stage in career. As contended by Hyland, publication is essential “because it is through publication that knowledge is constructed, academics are evaluated, universities are funded, and careers are built, and each year its influence becomes ever more intrusive and demanding”. As ECRs, we are particularly vulnerable to this imperative, as many of us have yet to secure tenure, so we may lack the job security of our more-established senior colleagues.
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The knowledge and skills needed to write an academic journal article for publication and then to successfully negotiate the peer review process are complex and unique. Many ECRs will have experienced inadequate training and mentoring in this area.
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Claim of CRISPR’d baby girls stuns genome editing summit – STAT (Sharon Begley | November 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on February 12, 2019
 

HONG KONG — A Chinese scientist’s claim that he used the genome editing technology CRISPR-Cas9 to alter the DNA of human embryos, resulting in the birth a few weeks ago of twin girls, stunned organizers of the Second International Summit on Human Genome Editing, leaving them scrambling to evaluate the claim two days before the scientist is scheduled to speak at the meeting.

“I don’t know the details” of the claim by He Jiankui, said David Baltimore of the California Institute of Technology, chairman of the organizing committee of the summit, which begins on Tuesday in Hong Kong. “We don’t know what will be said” when He speaks at a session on human embryo editing.

The summit’s organizing committee issued a statement Monday saying they had only just learned of He’s research in Shenzhen, China. “Whether the clinical protocols that resulted in the births in China conformed with the guidance” of leading scientific bodies for conducting clinical trials of heritable genome editing “remains to be determined,” the statement said. “We hope that the dialogue at our summit further advances the world’s understanding of the issues surrounding human genome editing. Our goal is to help ensure that human genome editing research be pursued responsibly, for the benefit of all society.”

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