An IBM researcher found his name on two papers with which he had no connection. A different paper listed a fictitious author by the name of “Bill Franks.”
DAVID COX, THE co-director of a prestigious artificial intelligence lab in Cambridge, Massachusetts, was scanning an online computer science bibliography in December when he noticed something odd—his name listed as an author alongside three researchers in China whom he didn’t know on two papers he didn’t recognize.
This WIRED story is a ‘good’ example of the impact of providing incentives for collaboration with researchers at premium institutions. It also highlights why journals and other publishers need to authenticate emails from non-institutional addresses.
It isn’t clear how prevalent this kind of academic fraud may be, or why someone would list as a coauthor someone not involved in the research. By checking other papers written by the same Chinese authors, WIRED found a third example, where the photo and biography of an MIT researcher were listed under a fictitious name.
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