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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

Neutralising fair credit: factors that influence unethical authorship practices (Brad S Trinkle et al 2017)0

Posted by Admin in on April 19, 2017
 

This paper provides some valuable insights (albeit from only s US sample) for the design of research integrity professional development strategies for HDR candidates.

This study experimentally tests whether the techniques of neutralisation as identified in the criminal justice literature influence graduate student willingness to engage in questionable research practices (QRPs). Our results indicate that US-born graduate students are more willing to add an undeserved coauthor if the person who requests it is a faculty member in the student’s department as opposed to a fellow student. Students are most likely to add an undeserving author if a faculty member is also their advisor. In addition, four techniques of neutralisation, ‘diffusion of responsibility’, ‘defence of necessity’, ‘advantageous comparison’ and ‘euphemistic labelling’, are associated with student willingness to act unethically. Participants who had received responsible conduct of research training were no less likely to commit the violation than those who had not. Knowledge of these influencing factors for QRPs will provide for opportunities to improve research ethics education strategies and materials.
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Trinkle BS, Phillips T, Hall A, Moffatt B (2017) Neutralising fair credit: factors that influence unethical authorship practices. Journal of Medical Ethics Published Online First: 31 January 2017. doi: 10.1136/medethics-2015-103365
Publisher (open access): http://jme.bmj.com/content/early/2017/01/31/medethics-2015-103365

U.S. researchers guilty of misconduct later won more than $100 million in NIH grants, study finds – Science (Alison McCook | February 2017)0

Posted by Admin in on April 17, 2017
 

Many believe that once a scientist is found guilty of research misconduct, his or her scientific career is over. But a new study suggests that, for many U.S. researchers judged to have misbehaved, there is such a thing as a second chance.

Nearly one-half of 284 researchers who were sanctioned for research misconduct in the last 25 years by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the largest U.S. funder of biomedical research, ultimately continued to publish or work in research in some capacity, according to a new analysis.

And a small number of those scientists—17, to be exact—went on to collectively win $101 million in new funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Read the rest of this discussion piece

Time to publication for publicly funded clinical trials in Australia: an observational study (Papers: Linn Beate Strand, et al | 2017)0

Posted by Admin in on April 16, 2017
 

Abstract

Objective
To examine the length of time between receiving funding and publishing the protocol and main paper for randomised controlled trials.

Design
An observational study using survival analysis.

Setting
Publicly funded health and medical research in Australia.

Participants
Randomised controlled trials funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia between 2008 and 2010.

Main outcome measures
Time from funding to the protocol paper and main results paper. Multiple variable survival models examining whether study characteristics predicted publication times.

Results
We found 77 studies with a total funding of $A59 million. The median time to publication of the protocol paper was 6.4 years after funding (95% CI 4.1 to 8.1). The proportion with a published protocol paper 8 years after funding was 0.61 (95% CI 0.48 to 0.74). The median time to publication of the main results paper was 7.1 years after funding (95% CI 6.3 to 7.6). The proportion with a published main results paper 8 years after funding was 0.72 (95% CI 0.56 to 0.87). The HRs for how study characteristics might influence timing were generally close to one with narrow CIs, the notable exception was that a longer study length lengthened the time to the main paper (HR=0.62 per extra study year, 95% CI 0.43 to 0.89).

Conclusions
Despite the widespread registration of clinical trials, there remain serious concerns of trial results not being published or being published with a long delay. We have found that these same concerns apply to protocol papers, which should be publishable soon after funding. Funding agencies could set a target of publishing the protocol paper within 18 months of funding.

Strand LB, Clarke P, Graves N, et al Time to publication for publicly funded clinical trials in Australia: an observational study. BMJ Open 2017;7:e012212. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2016-012212
Publisher (open access): http://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/7/3/e012212.info

With publically funded research there is not an unreasonable expectation that there should be a public good from the funded research. The reported outcome of a clinical trial is one way in which the public benefits. The delays reported by this paper does beg five questions: (i) what are the reasons (if any) for the delay; (ii) should the research office where the chief investigator is based monitor and chase to ensure the outcome is published; (iii) is the lack of, or delayed, outputs an ethical issue; (iv) do funding bodies have a role to play here; (v) Given the often high price of journal subscriptions should the outcomes of publically funded research be made widely available using open access publications?

Increased Publication in Predatory Journals by Developing Countries’ Institutions: What it Entails? And What Can be Done? (Papers: Mulubrhan Balehegn | 2017)0

Posted by Admin in on April 15, 2017
 

ABSTRACT
Recently, there has been an alarming increase in the number of “academic” papers published in vanity journals and publishers. Such journals, dubbed predatory because their main objective is making money out of authors, compromise or completely abandon the peer review system. An increase in publishing with such journals, which is common in developing counties, will affect the quality of science, excellence, development, and individual researchers’ and institutions’ professional reputation. In this article, the author discusses strategies for individual researchers and institutions for identifying and discouraging publishing in predatory journals. Moreover, suggestions on how to deal with faculty who have published and already bestowed positions on the grounds of papers published in predatory journals are also given. Strategies and suggestions discussed in this article can provide insights to librarians and publication officers on how to curb the problem of predatory publications.

KEYWORDS: Academic promotion, predatory journals, publication fraud, zombie professors

Balehegn, M. (2017) Increased Publication in Predatory Journals by Developing Countries’ Institutions: What it Entails? And What Can be Done? International Information & Library Review.: 1-4 http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10572317.2016.1278188
Publisher: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10572317.2016.1278188

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