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ResourcesResearch IntegrityUnderstanding the complexities of retractions (Amy Riegelman and Caitlin Bakker | January 2018)

Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

Understanding the complexities of retractions (Amy Riegelman and Caitlin Bakker | January 2018)

 


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Reasons for retracted publications range from honest errors made by authors or publishers to research misconduct (e.g., falsified data, fraudulent peer review). A retraction represents a status change of a publication in the scholarly literature. Other examples of status changes include correction or erratum. A retraction could be initiated by many parties, including authors, institutions, or journal editors. The U.S. National Library of Medicine annually reports on the number of retracted publications indexed within PubMed. While the overall rate of retractions is still very small, retractions have increased considerably in the last decade from 97 retracted articles in 2006 to 664 in 2016.1

Quite simply an excellent resource that we urge institutions to include in you research integrity resource library and all ECRs to read/keep for ongoing reference.

As librarians help users navigate research platforms and maintain awareness of publication status changes, it is important to understand both the publishing and discovery landscape. Guidelines exist to help publishers and platforms identify retractions, but a recent study found inconsistent representations of retractions across various platforms.2 Another consideration is when scholars export citations or full-text articles out of various discovery platforms to personal libraries (e.g., Mendeley, DropBox).
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Philip Davis studied retracted articles residing in personal libraries and nonpublisher websites. Among the findings, Mendeley libraries contained many retracted articles, and Davis concluded that this decentralized access without automated status updates “may come with the cost of promoting incorrect, invalid, or untrustworthy science.”3
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RIEGELMAN, Amy; BAKKER, Caitlin. Understanding the complexities of retractions: Recommended resources.College & Research Libraries News, [S.l.], v. 79, n. 1, p. 38. ISSN 2150-6698. Available at: <https://crln.acrl.org/index.php/crlnews/article/view/16865/18491>. doi:https://doi.org/10.5860/crln.79.1.38.
Publisher (Open Access): https://crln.acrl.org/index.php/crlnews/article/view/16865/18491


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