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Fighting Citation Pollution — The Challenge of Detecting Fraudulent Journals in Works Cited – Scholarly Kitchen ( Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe and Michael Clarke | September 2019)

Published/Released on October 25, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 7, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

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Scientists ‘may have crossed ethical line’ in growing human brains – The Guardian (Ian Sample | )

Debate needed over research with ‘potential for something to suffer’, neuroscientists say

Neuroscientists may have crossed an “ethical rubicon” by growing lumps of human brain in the lab, and in some cases transplanting the tissue into animals, researchers warn. The creation of mini-brains or brain... More

Debate needed over research with ‘potential for something to suffer’, neuroscientists say

Neuroscientists may have crossed an “ethical rubicon” by growing lumps of human brain in the lab, and in some cases transplanting the tissue into animals, researchers warn. The creation of mini-brains or brain “organoids” has become one of the hottest fields in modern neuroscience. The blobs of tissue are made from stem cells and, while they are only the size of a pea, some have developed spontaneous brain waves, similar to those seen in premature babies. Many scientists believe that organoids have the potential to transform medicine by allowing them to probe the living brain like never before. But the work is controversial because it is unclear where it may cross the line into human experimentation.

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Work of renowned UK psychologist Hans Eysenck ruled ‘unsafe’ – The Guardian (Sarah Boseley | October 2019)

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(Australia) Materials scientist will soon be up to 30 retractions – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | October 2019)

A researcher at Swinburne University of Technology in Australia will soon add three more retractions to his burgeoning count, making 30. Ali Nazari has lost 27 papers from several journals, as we’ve reported over the past few months. According to an upcoming notice obtained by Retraction Watch, the International Journal... More

A researcher at Swinburne University of Technology in Australia will soon add three more retractions to his burgeoning count, making 30. Ali Nazari has lost 27 papers from several journals, as we’ve reported over the past few months. According to an upcoming notice obtained by Retraction Watch, the International Journal of Material Research (IJMR) will be retracting three more:

These papers published in IJMR have significant overlap in terms of identical content and wording with papers published by Ali Nazari et al. in other journals; strikingly the same micrographs and numerical data were used in different papers, albeit discussing different materials (additives).

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(Australia) UNSW skin cancer researcher Levon Khachigian hit with string of retractions – ABC News (Elise Worthington and Kyle Taylor | October 2019)

Levon Khachigian cuts an imposing figure in the hallways of the UNSW School of Medical Sciences. [colored_box]The 55-year-old cell biologist rose to the top of the university's academic hierarchy, on a salary package once worth more than $250,000 a year. . In the elite world of academia, where prestige is... More

Levon Khachigian cuts an imposing figure in the hallways of the UNSW School of Medical Sciences. [colored_box]The 55-year-old cell biologist rose to the top of the university's academic hierarchy, on a salary package once worth more than $250,000 a year. . In the elite world of academia, where prestige is driven by publication in top scientific journals and research funding is scarce, Professor Khachigian has been a big earner, bringing more than $23 million in funding to the university over his three-decade career. The cancer and cardiovascular researcher was once regarded as a rising star on the brink of a breakthrough treatment for skin cancer. . Professor Khachigian is the winner of multiple Eureka prizes, widely regarded as the "Oscars" of Australian science, and once told a newspaper that the toughest part of the job was "when a research paper is rejected for publication on whimsical grounds". .

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When CVs Are Too Good to Be True – Inside Higher Ed (Colleen Flaherty | October 2019)

Published/Released on October 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 9, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

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Two-thirds of researchers report ‘pressure to cite’ in Nature poll – Nature (Dalmeet Singh Chawla | October 2019)

Published/Released on October 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 7, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Readers say they have been asked to reference seemingly superfluous studies after peer review.

An online poll answered by more than 4,300 Nature readers suggests that most researchers have felt pressured by peer reviewers to cite studies in their papers that seem unnecessary. Readers were... More

Readers say they have been asked to reference seemingly superfluous studies after peer review.

An online poll answered by more than 4,300 Nature readers suggests that most researchers have felt pressured by peer reviewers to cite studies in their papers that seem unnecessary. Readers were asked, ‘Have you ever felt pressured by peer reviewers to cite seemingly superfluous studies in your work?’, to which 66% responded ‘yes’ and 34% said ‘no’ (see ‘Coercive citation?’). The poll accompanied a news story last month, which revealed that the Dutch publisher Elsevier had found a small proportion of academics reviewing papers for its journals were exploiting the review process by asking authors to reference the reviewers’ own papers in exchange for a positive report.

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(Taiwan) Draft amendment would make hiring thesis ghostwriter ethical misconduct – Taipei Times (Chien Hui-ju | September 2019)

Published/Released on October 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 16, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

If proposed new regulations are approved, researchers who have papers ghostwritten would need to return their government funding, because the draft would classify the practice as misconduct, Minister of Science and Technology Chen Liang-gee (陳良基) said on Monday last week. The ministry last month proposed draft amendments to its Guidelines... More

If proposed new regulations are approved, researchers who have papers ghostwritten would need to return their government funding, because the draft would classify the practice as misconduct, Minister of Science and Technology Chen Liang-gee (陳良基) said on Monday last week. The ministry last month proposed draft amendments to its Guidelines for Handling and Investigating Research Misconduct (學術倫理案件處理及審議要點), which governs researchers’ applications to the ministry for project funding or academic awards. Having a paper ghostwritten is a breach of research ethics and investigations would be able to go back 10 years, the draft says.

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 For Vulnerable Populations, the Thorny Ethics of Genetic Data Collection – UnDark (Adrian Pecotic | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 30, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

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(US) NIH must better protect research from foreign influence, federal watchdog says – STAT (Lev Facher | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 27, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 13, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

WASHINGTON — Foreign governments and corporations could profit from American academic institutions’ failure to safeguard taxpayer-funded biomedical research, according to a set of new reports from a federal watchdog. [colored_box]The reports, issued by the Department of Health and Human Services inspector general, show that 54% of research institutions funded by... More

WASHINGTON — Foreign governments and corporations could profit from American academic institutions’ failure to safeguard taxpayer-funded biomedical research, according to a set of new reports from a federal watchdog. [colored_box]The reports, issued by the Department of Health and Human Services inspector general, show that 54% of research institutions funded by the National Institutes of Health — some 1,013 universities and academic centers — failed to publish financial conflict-of-interest policies online. In 2018, according to the report, the NIH conducted just three audits to determine grantee institutions’ own efforts to safeguard their research — down from 28 in 2012. . “The concern, generally speaking, is whether financial interests threaten or distort the use of NIH funds for their intended research purpose or the results of that scientific research,” Erin Bliss, an assistant HHS inspector general, said in an interview. “There are also concerns around the diversion of intellectual property, which could be an economic or a national security risk, and the potential for distortion or inappropriate influence of funding decisions.” .

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Payment of participants in research: information for researchers, HRECs and other ethics review bodies (NHMRC | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 3, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

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(Australia) Unauthorised survey asked students to rate Chinese people out of seven – Sydney Morning Herald (Nick Bonyhady | September 2019)

An unauthorised survey delivered to students at the University of Sydney under the university's official logo asked them to rate the attractiveness and intelligence of Chinese people out of seven.
[colored_box]The survey was delivered by both paid and volunteer pollsters to students voting in student representative council elections at the university... More

An unauthorised survey delivered to students at the University of Sydney under the university's official logo asked them to rate the attractiveness and intelligence of Chinese people out of seven.
[colored_box]The survey was delivered by both paid and volunteer pollsters to students voting in student representative council elections at the university this week. It claimed to be "approved in principle by the University of Sydney's ethics committee" and "endorsed by the political science department." . A University of Sydney spokeswoman said the university had "very strong concerns" about the content of the survey, which it was not aware of until contacted by the Herald on Wednesday, and how it was delivered. . "An initial inquiry indicates ethics approval was not obtained for the study and our logo has been used without permission," the spokeswoman said. "We are formally contacting the staff and student involved today to advise them the matter may be subject to disciplinary proceedings." .

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Pay-to-Participate Trials and Vulnerabilities in Research Ethics Oversight – JAMA Network (Holly Fernandez Lynch, et al | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 23, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Faced with the prospect of death or debilitating disease, patients and their families may be willing to try almost any treatment. A number of systems exist to help prevent this understandable desperation from resulting in serious harm, including standards of medical professionalism, requirements for product approval by the US... More

Faced with the prospect of death or debilitating disease, patients and their families may be willing to try almost any treatment. A number of systems exist to help prevent this understandable desperation from resulting in serious harm, including standards of medical professionalism, requirements for product approval by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and oversight of research by institutional review boards (IRBs). There are gaps in this safety net, however, that become particularly evident in the context of clinical trials that require patients to pay to participate. Although these trials may sometimes satisfy the standards of ethical research, the research oversight system in the United States is not sufficiently robust to ensure that this will always be the case. Pay-to-Participate Trials Clinical research is typically funded by governments, charitable foundations, and private companies. Built into this traditional funding system are review mechanisms intended to select for high-priority, high-quality studies. These mechanisms can often prevent the initiation of low-value studies, but they may also limit innovation by prioritizing incremental progress over bold ideas or deprioritizing research with little commercial promise. Inevitably, limited resources may force funders to forgo important studies. One response is to seek out alternative funding sources, including study participants. Short of fraud protections, there is no legal prohibition against asking patients to pay to participate in research. The FDA explicitly permits charging for investigational products under certain circumstances, while regulations governing research consent simply call for disclosure of any “additional costs” that may result from participation.

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Peer Review Week – the Podcast and the Videos! – Scholarly Kitchen (Alice Meadows | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 20, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 28, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

[colored_box] We’re delighted to end this year’s Peer Review Week celebrations by sharing some great community resources that you can use all year round! The Peer Review Week channel on YouTube features short videos by researchers, editors, publishers, and others on the theme of quality in peer review, and there’s... More

[colored_box] We’re delighted to end this year’s Peer Review Week celebrations by sharing some great community resources that you can use all year round! The Peer Review Week channel on YouTube features short videos by researchers, editors, publishers, and others on the theme of quality in peer review, and there’s also a 60 second podcast on Peer Review Week by Sense about Science Director, Tracey Brown, OBE. Until next year … enjoy!

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Why We Need Guidelines for Brain Scan Data – Wired (Evan D. Morris | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 17, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 18, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Your brain is a lot like your DNA. It is, arguably, everything that makes you uniquely you. Some types of brain scans are a lot like DNA tests. They may reveal what diseases you have (Parkinson’s, certainly; depression-possibly), what happened in your past (drug abuse,... More

Your brain is a lot like your DNA. It is, arguably, everything that makes you uniquely you. Some types of brain scans are a lot like DNA tests. They may reveal what diseases you have (Parkinson’s, certainly; depression-possibly), what happened in your past (drug abuse, probably; trauma, maybe), or even what your future may hold (Alzheimer’s, likely; response to treatment, hopefully). Many people are aware—and properly protective—of the vast stores of information contained in their DNA. When DNA samples were collected in New York without consent, some went to great lengths to have their DNA expunged from databases being amassed by the police. Fewer people are aware of the similarly vast amounts of information in a brain scan, and even fewer are taking steps to protect it. My colleagues and I are scientists who use brain imaging (PET and fMRI) to study neuropsychiatric diseases. Based on our knowledge of the technologies we probably ought to be concerned. And yet, it is rare that we discuss the ethical implications of brain imaging. Nevertheless, by looking closely, we can observe parallel trends in science and science policy that are refining the quality of information that can be extracted from a brain scan, and expanding who will have access to it. There may be good and bad reasons to use a brain scan to make personalized predictions. Good or bad, wise or unwise, the research is already being conducted and the brain scans are piling up. PET (Positron Emission Tomography) is commonly used, clinically, to identify sites of altered metabolism (e.g., tumors). In research, it can be used to identify molecular targets for treatment. A recent PET study of brain metabolism in patients with mild cognitive impairment predicted who would develop Alzheimer’s disease. In our work at Yale, we have used PET images of a medication that targets an opioid receptor to predict which problem drinkers would reduce their drinking while on the medication.

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How to Be A Good Peer Reviewer – Scholarly Kitchen (Jasmine Wallace | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 17, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 25, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

In my experience, the streamlined process of peer review is complicated when reviewers with good intentions do bad things. A reviewer who does bad things displays behaviors that slow down or lessen the effectiveness of peer review. A good peer reviewer displays efficient behaviors and adds value to the... More

In my experience, the streamlined process of peer review is complicated when reviewers with good intentions do bad things. A reviewer who does bad things displays behaviors that slow down or lessen the effectiveness of peer review. A good peer reviewer displays efficient behaviors and adds value to the process. The good thing about a reviewer who does bad things is that they can change. There are quite a few ways to shift bad behaviors and habits of reviewers to become not just good, but great peer reviewers. Mind the Time Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Seriously, good reviewers do not keep a fellow peer waiting longer than needed to receive their review. Keep in mind that your review is holding their work from progressing. Some people have been working for years to get their research “peer review” ready. Their blood, sweat, and tears have gone into the work you’ve been asked to evaluate. When you get the initial invitation to review, make note of the deadline. Pull out your calendar and check to see if you can realistically return a fair and sound assessment of the work in the allotted time. If the deadline is not reasonable, don’t be afraid to ask for an extension.

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(US) Columbia historian stepping down after plagiarism finding – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 17, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 26, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

A tenured professor of history at Columbia University will be stepping down at the end of next year after an investigating committee at the school found “incontrovertible evidence of research misconduct” in his controversial 2013 book. Charles King Armstrong, the Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Studies in the Social Sciences,... More

A tenured professor of history at Columbia University will be stepping down at the end of next year after an investigating committee at the school found “incontrovertible evidence of research misconduct” in his controversial 2013 book. Charles King Armstrong, the Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Studies in the Social Sciences, was found to have “cited nonexistent or irrelevant sources in at least 61 instances” in “Tyranny of the Weak: North Korea and the World, 1950-1992,” according to the Columbia Spectator, which first reported on the resignation last week. In a September 10 letter, Maya Tolstoy, dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, announced the news to the institution:

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Checklists to Detect Potential Predatory Biomedical Journals: A Systematic Review (Papers: Samantha Cukier, et al | Preprint September 2019)

Published/Released on September 16, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 23, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Abstract

Background: We believe there is a large number of checklists to help authors detect predatory journals. It is uncertain whether these checklists contain similar content.

Purpose: Perform a systematic review to identify checklists to detect... More

Abstract

Background: We believe there is a large number of checklists to help authors detect predatory journals. It is uncertain whether these checklists contain similar content.

Purpose: Perform a systematic review to identify checklists to detect potential predatory journals and to examine their content and measurement properties. Data Sources: MEDLINE, Embase, PsycINFO, ERIC, Web of Science and Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts (January 2012 to November 2018), university library websites (January 2019), YouTube (January 2019). Study Selection: Original checklists used to detect potential predatory journals published in English, French or Portuguese, with instructions in point form, bullet form, tabular format or listed items, not including lists or guidance on recognizing "legitimate" or "trustworthy" journals. Data Extraction: Pairs of reviewers independently extracted study data and assessed checklist quality and a third reviewer resolved conflicts. Data Synthesis: Of 1528 records screened, 93 met our inclusion criteria. The majority of included checklists were in English (n = 90, 97%), could be completed in fewer than five minutes (n = 68, 73%), had an average of 11 items, which were not weighted (n = 91, 98%), did not include qualitative guidance (n = 78, 84%) or quantitative guidance (n = 91, 98%), were not evidence-based (n = 90, 97%) and covered a mean of four (of six) thematic categories. Only three met our criteria for being evidence-based. Limitations: Limited languages and years of publication, searching other media. Conclusions: There is a plethora of published checklists that may overwhelm authors looking to efficiently guard against publishing in predatory journals. The similarity in checklists could lead to the creation of evidence-based tools serving authors from all disciplines.

Cukier, S., Helal, L., Rice, D.B., Pupkaite, J., Ahmadzai, N., Wilson, M., Skidmore, B., Lalu, M., Moher, D. (Preprint 2019) Checklists to Detect Potential Predatory Biomedical Journals: A Systematic Review. medRxiv. 19005728; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/19005728 Publisher: https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/19005728v1

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Fake Citations Kill a Career – Inside Higher Ed (Colleen Flaherty | September 2017)

Columbia says a historian's acclaimed book on North Korea was plagiarized, and its publisher says it's been taken out of print.

Charles Armstrong, Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Studies in the Social Sciences at Columbia University, plagiarized parts of his... More

Columbia says a historian's acclaimed book on North Korea was plagiarized, and its publisher says it's been taken out of print.

Charles Armstrong, Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Studies in the Social Sciences at Columbia University, plagiarized parts of his award-winning book on North Korea, Tyranny of the Weak: North Korea and the World, 1950-1992. He’s currently on sabbatical and will retire at the end of 2020, the university told Armstrong’s colleagues this week. “These findings were made in accordance with our policy, which required a confidential preliminary review by an inquiry committee, an investigation by a separate ad hoc faculty committee, oversight and recommendations by the university’s standing Committee on the Conduct of Research, and final decisions by the executive vice president for research and the provost,” Maya Tolstoy, dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, wrote in an email to professors that was obtained by Inside Higher Ed. Findings of research misconduct are generally “communicated to the public through retractions or corrections published in the scholarly literature,” Tolstoy wrote. “Where such a retraction is not feasible, the university may choose to notify the relevant community.”

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(Australian case) A publisher just retracted 22 articles. And the whistleblower is just getting started – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 13, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 15, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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Australia ‘There is a problem’: Australia’s top scientist Alan Finkel pushes to eradicate bad science – The Conversation (Alan Finkel | September 2019)

[colored_box]In the main, Australia produces high-quality research that is rigorous and reproducible, and makes a significant contribution towards scientific progress. But that doesn’t mean we can’t do it better. . In the case of the research sector here and abroad, we need to acknowledge that as good as the... More

[colored_box]In the main, Australia produces high-quality research that is rigorous and reproducible, and makes a significant contribution towards scientific progress. But that doesn’t mean we can’t do it better. . In the case of the research sector here and abroad, we need to acknowledge that as good as the research system is, there is a problem. . There are a significant number of papers that are of poor quality, and should never have made it through to publication. In considering why this might be the case, I have found myself reflecting on the role of incentives in the research system. . Because incentives matter, as we have seen through the findings of the Royal Commission into the banking sector led by Kenneth Hayne. . The commission shone a light on how the sector incentivises its employees. And there are some incentives in the research community that, in my view, need to be looked at. . We may be inadvertently encouraging poor behaviour. And to ensure research remains high-quality and trustworthy, we need to get the incentives right. .

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We Need to Talk About Authorship Abuse – Inside Higher Ed (A. Susan Jurow and Jordan Jurow | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 12, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 24, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

The academic community must move beyond compliance with standards and toward the cultivation of a greater sense of ethical responsibility, argue A. Susan Jurow and Jordan Jurow.

Abuse of authorship is increasingly common in higher education. For example, too many... More

The academic community must move beyond compliance with standards and toward the cultivation of a greater sense of ethical responsibility, argue A. Susan Jurow and Jordan Jurow.

Abuse of authorship is increasingly common in higher education. For example, too many academics are either listing the names of people on papers who have not contributed to those papers or they are not including the names of those who have. As a result, authorship has become a false signifier of intellectual productivity and authority. And if we allow such authorship abuse to continue unabated, we are abdicating our responsibilities as scholars, furthering distrust in educational institutions and delegitimizing our ability to make knowledge claims that can enable us to effect change. Simply put, an author is a person who has contributed real and identifiable intellectual labor to earn their position on a paper. Giving credit to those who do not deserve it -- or, equally problematic, not crediting those who have done work -- compromises the trustworthiness of our research and our honor as scholars. The perversion of authorship is being reproduced through unreflective practice, apprenticeship into inappropriate practices and, at times, outright dishonesty, facilitated by the growing use of problematic metrics of scholarship.

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A publisher wants to destigmatize retractions. Here’s how – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 12, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 15, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

It’s no secret that retractions have a stigma, which is very likely part of why authors often resist the move — even when honest error is involved. There have been at least a few proposals to change the nomenclature for some retractions over the years,... More

It’s no secret that retractions have a stigma, which is very likely part of why authors often resist the move — even when honest error is involved. There have been at least a few proposals to change the nomenclature for some retractions over the years, from turning them into “amendments” to a new taxonomy. Erica Boxheimer, data integrity analyst at EMBO Press, and Bernd Pulverer, chief editor of The EMBO Journal and head of scientific publications for the Press, have suggested a related solution, which builds on a 2015 proposal:

We proposed to use the term “withdrawal” instead of the canonical “retraction” for an author‐initiated retraction based on “honest mistakes”. We are now using the terms “retraction” and “withdrawal” as formally distinct content types across EMBO Press in the hope that “withdrawal” attracts less stigma and encourages self‐correction. 

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Elsevier investigates hundreds of peer reviewers for manipulating citations – Nature (Dalmeet Singh Chawla | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 10, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 17, 2019 | Keywords: , ,

The publisher is scrutinizing researchers who might be inappropriately using the review process to promote their own work.

[colored_box]The Dutch publisher Elsevier is investigating hundreds of researchers whom it suspects of deliberately manipulating the peer-review process to boost their own citation numbers. . The... More

The publisher is scrutinizing researchers who might be inappropriately using the review process to promote their own work.

[colored_box]The Dutch publisher Elsevier is investigating hundreds of researchers whom it suspects of deliberately manipulating the peer-review process to boost their own citation numbers. . The publisher is looking into the possibility that some peer reviewers are encouraging the authors of work under review to cite the reviewers’ own research in exchange for positive reviews — a frowned-on practice broadly termed coercive citation. . Elsevier’s probe has also revealed that several of these reviewers seem to be engaging in other questionable publishing practices in studies that they have themselves authored. The Elsevier analysts who uncovered the activity told Nature that they “discovered clear evidence of peer-review manipulation” and of academics publishing the same studies more than once. Elsevier said that their investigations will lead to some of these studies being retracted. .

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What’s next for Registered Reports? – Nature (Chris Chambers | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 10, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 19, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

Reviewing and accepting study plans before results are known can counter perverse incentives. Chris Chambers sets out three ways to improve the approach.

What part of a research study — hypotheses, methods, results, or discussion — should remain beyond a scientist’s control? The answer,... More

Reviewing and accepting study plans before results are known can counter perverse incentives. Chris Chambers sets out three ways to improve the approach.

What part of a research study — hypotheses, methods, results, or discussion — should remain beyond a scientist’s control? The answer, of course, is the results: the part that matters most for publishing in prestigious journals and advancing careers. This paradox means that the careful scepticism required to avoid massaging data or skewing analysis is pitted against the drive to identify eye-catching outcomes. Unbiased, negative and complicated findings lose out to cherry-picked highlights that can bring prominent articles, grant funding, promotion and esteem. The ‘results paradox’ is a chief cause of unreliable science. Negative, or null, results go unpublished, leading other researchers into unwittingly redundant studies. Ambiguous or otherwise ‘unattractive’ results are airbrushed (consciously or not) into publishable false positives, spurring follow-up research and theories that are bound to collapse. Clearly, we need to change how we evaluate and publish research. For the past six years, I have championed Registered Reports (RRs), a type of research article that is radically different from conventional papers. The 30 or so journals that were early adopters have together published some 200 RRs, and more than 200 journals are now accepting submissions in this format (see ‘Rapid rise’). When it launched in 2017, Nature Human Behaviour became the first of the Nature journals to join this group. In July, it published its first two such reports1. With RRs on the rise, now is a good time to take stock of their potential and limitations

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China strengthens its campaign against scientific misconduct – CE&EN (Hepeng Jia | September 2019)

New publishing standards aim for clarity on plagiarism, fabrication, and authorship

Amid increasing attention to scientific research integrity in China, the country has adopted a new set of standards to more clearly define misconduct in publishing journal articles. Experts hope the new... More

New publishing standards aim for clarity on plagiarism, fabrication, and authorship

Amid increasing attention to scientific research integrity in China, the country has adopted a new set of standards to more clearly define misconduct in publishing journal articles. Experts hope the new clarity will make it easier to discipline researchers who violate the standards. The State Administration of Press and Publication, the agency in charge of China’s publishing sector, released and adopted in July the Academic Publishing Specification—Definition of Academic Misconduct for Journals. Other standards developed by the agency cover citation and translation practices and the use of ancient Chinese.
The publishing specification defines and distinguishes plagiarism, fabrication, and falsification. It also addresses inappropriate authorship, duplicate or multiple submissions, and overlapping publications.
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How to Boost Racial, Ethnic and Gender Diversity in Clinical Research (Report – Syneos: September 2019)

Why All Stakeholders Must OWN The Mission Healthcare transformations take time—and the time lag has consequences.

[colored_box]It has been 25 years since Congress passed the National Institutes of Health Revitalization Act requiring federally funded clinical research programs to prioritize... More

Why All Stakeholders Must OWN The Mission Healthcare transformations take time—and the time lag has consequences.

[colored_box]It has been 25 years since Congress passed the National Institutes of Health Revitalization Act requiring federally funded clinical research programs to prioritize inclusion of women and minorities. Since then, both the NIH and the Food and Drug Administration have mounted numerous initiatives, including regulatory guidance aimed at shoring up the law’s intent. ,

Despite parallel efforts by biopharmaceutical innovators, the demographics of clinical trials today still do not reflect the racial, ethnic or gender diversity of target patient populations around the world. This is true for trial subjects, of whom an estimated 83 percent are white. And it’s true for the race/ethnicity/gender representation of investigators at many trial sites as well.

As advanced health systems around the world enter an era of genomic and precision medicine, lack of diversity across the clinical research landscape is a daunting obstacle.

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Could a New Project Expose Predatory Conferences? – Technology Networks (Paul Killoran, Ex Ordo | September 2019)

Published/Released on September 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 9, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

By now, predatory conferences should be on your radar. These “scholarly” events are organized on a strictly for-profit basis, pay lip service to peer review, and publish almost anything sent their way — for a fee, of course. (An associate professor submitted a nuclear physics paper More

By now, predatory conferences should be on your radar. These “scholarly” events are organized on a strictly for-profit basis, pay lip service to peer review, and publish almost anything sent their way — for a fee, of course. (An associate professor submitted a nuclear physics paper written using iOS autocomplete to one such conference. It passed review with flying colors.) For years, shady individuals have been exploiting early-career researchers’ eagerness to publish. But unless you were desperate  — or painfully naive — fake conferences were pretty easy to spot and avoid. Up till now. Effective predators adapt, and today’s breed of predatory conference is a much better mimic of the real deal. Their organizers are tech-savvy enough to create counterfeit websites that masquerade as those belonging to learned societies. I know of at least one medical association that had its conference website cloned by scammers and placed online at a web address that was just close enough to the real thing to be believable.

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(China) A 10-year follow up of publishing ethics in China: what is new and what is unchanged (Papers: Katrina A. Bramstedt & Jun Xu | September 2019)

Abstract Background Organ donation and transplantation in China are ethically complex due to questionable informed consent and the use of prisoners as donors. Publishing works from China can be problematic. The objective of this study was to perform a 10-year follow up on... More

Abstract Background Organ donation and transplantation in China are ethically complex due to questionable informed consent and the use of prisoners as donors. Publishing works from China can be problematic. The objective of this study was to perform a 10-year follow up on Chinese journals active in donation and transplant publishing regarding the evolution of their publishing guidelines. Methods Eleven Chinese journals were analyzed for 7 properties: (1) ethics committee approval; (2) procedure consent; (3) publishing consent; (4) authorship criteria; (5) conflict of interest; (6) duplicate publication; and (7) data integrity. Results were compared with our 2008 study data. Additionally, open access status, impact factor, and MEDLINE-indexing were explored. Results Most journals heightened the ethical requirements for publishing, compared to the results of 2008. All 11 now require their published manuscripts to have data integrity. Ten of 11 require ethics committee approval and informed consent for the publication of research studies, whereas in the original study only 2 journals evidenced these requirements. Nine of 11 have criteria for authorship, require conflict of interest disclosure, and forbid duplicate publishing. None of the journals have a policy to exclude data that was obtained from unethical organ donation practices. Nine of 11 journals are MEDLINE-indexed but only 2 are open-access. Conclusions Most journals have improved their general ethical publishing requirements but none address unethical organ donation practices. Keywords: China; Informed consent; Organ donation; Publishing; Research ethics; Research integrity

Bramstedt, K. and Xu, J. (20019) (China) A 10-year follow up of publishing ethics in China: what is new and what is unchanged. Research Integrity and Peer Review 4(17) https://doi.org/10.1186/s41073-019-0077-3. Publisher (Open Access): https://researchintegrityjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s41073-019-0077-3

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Q&A Linda Beaumont: Journals should take action against toxic peer reviews – Nature Index (Gemma Conroy | August 2019)

Published/Released on August 30, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Keep it constructive.

Learning to accept criticism is an important skill for researchers navigating the peer-review process. But what happens when the feedback is unhelpful, rude or downright toxic? Linda Beaumont, an ecologist... More

Keep it constructive.

Learning to accept criticism is an important skill for researchers navigating the peer-review process. But what happens when the feedback is unhelpful, rude or downright toxic? Linda Beaumont, an ecologist at Macquarie University in Australia, is no stranger to a harsh review. “One reviewer of a submission bluntly wrote, ‘I can’t believe the authors used this approach. This paper shouldn’t be published,’” says Beaumont. “Two sentences. I was gobsmacked.” But when one of her PhD students received a similarly cutting review, Beaumont knew it was time to speak out. In August 2019, she published a comment in Nature calling for clear ethical guidelines for peer-reviewers. She adds that editors have a role to play in addressing damaging feedback before it reaches the authors. Nature Index spoke to Beaumont about how peer reviewers can keep their feedback constructive, and how authors should respond when they don’t.

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Expression of Interest: Consumer Inclusive Research – Consumer Reference Group

Published/Released on August 27, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 26, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

The Hopkins Centre is recruiting 8 consumer representatives on a Consumer Inclusive Research - Consumer Reference Group.

The Hopkins Centre is conducting research on “Supporting the ethical inclusion of people with acquired disability in research: Consumer informed approaches”. We invite consumers and community members... More

The Hopkins Centre is recruiting 8 consumer representatives on a Consumer Inclusive Research - Consumer Reference Group.

The Hopkins Centre is conducting research on “Supporting the ethical inclusion of people with acquired disability in research: Consumer informed approaches”. We invite consumers and community members to join a reference group which will support and guide us in this project. We cannot and should not do our research without including you, so we are asking for your help. This opportunity would suit a consumer who has a particular interest in research. Membership We are recruiting 8 consumers or carers from a variety of backgrounds to participate in a maximum of 4 meetings to be held over approximately 6 months via teleconference or web based. Applications from a range of people and groups is encouraged. How to apply Please complete the Expression of Interest form below and return to Dr Gary Allen at The Hopkins Centre via g.allen@griffith.edu.au by 9am Friday 20 September 2019. For queries relating to the Reference Group or assistance completing this Expression of Interest, please contact Gary Allen at The Hopkins Centre via g.allen@griffith.edu.au or by phone on c/o 07 3735 2069.

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Peer Review (NHMRC An Australian Code (2018) good practice guide | August 2019)

Published/Released on August 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 30, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

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Disclosure of interests and management of conflicts of interest (NHMRC An Australian Code (2018) good practice guide | August 2019)

A guide supporting the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research

Contents 1. Introduction 1 2. Disclosure of interests 2 ...2.1 What interests should be disclosed? 2 More

A guide supporting the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research

Contents 1. Introduction 1 2. Disclosure of interests 2 ...2.1 What interests should be disclosed? 2 ...2.2 What is a conflict of interest? 3 ...2.3 Identifying and managing conflicts of interest 3 3. Responsibilities of institutions 4 ...3.1 Develop and promote institutional policy 4 ...3.2 Provide training for researchers 4 ...3.3 Manage institutional interests 5 4. Responsibilities of researchers 5 ...4.1 Disclose interests and comply with relevant policies 5 ...4.2 Engage in relevant training 6 5. Resolution of disputes 6 6. Breaches of the Code 6 Additional resources 6

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Enhancing ethics review of social and behavioral research: developing a review template in Ethiopia (Papers: Liya Wassie, et al | August 2019)

Abstract Background: Africa is increasingly becoming an important region for health research, mainly due to its heavy burden of disease, socioeconomic challenges, and inadequate health facilities. Regulatory capacities, in terms of ethical review processes, are also generally weak. The ethical assessment of social... More

Abstract Background: Africa is increasingly becoming an important region for health research, mainly due to its heavy burden of disease, socioeconomic challenges, and inadequate health facilities. Regulatory capacities, in terms of ethical review processes, are also generally weak. The ethical assessment of social and behavioral research is relatively neglected compared to the review of biomedical and clinical studies, which led us to develop an ethics review assessment tool for use in the review of social and behavioral research in Ethiopia, which could potentially be of value in low- and middle-income settings. Methods: Initially, we did a comprehensive literature review on principles, guidelines, and practices of research ethics, on social and behavioral studies, from which we extracted query terms to explore the opinions of selected key informants and focus groups in Ethiopia. The discussants and informants were selected using a convenience sampling method to evaluate an ethics review template, which integrated issues that commonly arise in social and behavioral studies. Finally, we directly solicited opinions from the discussants about the desirability, feasibility, acceptability, and relevance of the ethics review assessment tool and used the resulting data to refine our initial draft. Results and conclusion: Although the same basic ethics principles govern all research studies, social and behavioral research have some disciplinary particularities that may require reviewers to exercise a different orientation of ethical attention in some cases. Using a qualitative approach, we developed a review assessment tool that could potentially be useful to raise awareness, focus attention, and strengthen the review of social and behavioral studies by ethics review committees, particularly in settings without a long-standing tradition of reviewing such research. This process also exposed some areas where further capacity building and discussion of ethical issues may be necessary among stakeholders in the review of social and behavioral research. Keywords Behavioral, social, qualitative, biomedical research, ethics review, low and middle income

Liya Wassie, Senkenesh Gebre-Mariam, Geremew Terekegne et al. (2019) Enhancing ethics review of social and behavioural research: Developing a review template in Ethiopia. Research Ethics 15(4) 1–23. Publisher (Open Access): https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1747016119865731

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Genomic Research Through an Indigenous Lens: Understanding the Expectations (Nanibaa’ A. Garrison, et al | August 2019)

Published/Released on August 15, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Abstract Indigenous scholars are leading initiatives to improve access to genetic and genomic research and health care based on their unique cultural contexts and within sovereign-based governance models created and accepted by their peoples. In the past, Indigenous peoples’ engagement with genomic research was hampered by... More

Abstract Indigenous scholars are leading initiatives to improve access to genetic and genomic research and health care based on their unique cultural contexts and within sovereign-based governance models created and accepted by their peoples. In the past, Indigenous peoples’ engagement with genomic research was hampered by a lack of standardized guidelines and institutional partnerships, resulting in group harms. This article provides a comparative analysis of research guidelines from Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and the United States that pertain to Indigenous peoples. The goals of the analysis are to identify areas that need attention, support Indigenous-led governance, and promote the development of a model research policy framework for genomic research and health care that has international relevance for Indigenous peoples. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics Volume 22 is August 30, 2019. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

Garrison, N. A., Hudson, M., L. Ballantyne, LL., Garba, I. Martinez, A., Taualii, M., Arbour L., Caron, NR. and Rainie, SC. (2019). Genomic Research Through an Indigenous Lens: Understanding the Expectations. Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics 20(1) https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev-genom-083118-015434

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Journals retract more than a dozen studies from China that may have used executed prisoners’ organs – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | August 2017)

In the past month, PLOS ONE and Transplantation have retracted fifteen studies by authors in China because of suspicions that the authors may have used organs from executed prisoners. All of the original studies — seven in Transplantation, and eight in PLOS ONE — were published between 2008 and 2014.... More

In the past month, PLOS ONE and Transplantation have retracted fifteen studies by authors in China because of suspicions that the authors may have used organs from executed prisoners. All of the original studies — seven in Transplantation, and eight in PLOS ONE — were published between 2008 and 2014. Two involved kidney transplants, and the rest involved liver transplants. Two other journals, the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology and Kidney International, have recently issued expressions of concern for the same reason. In an editorial explaining the seven retractions from its journal, the editors of Transplantation write:

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Doing the right thing: Psychology researchers retract paper three days after learning of coding error – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | August 2019)

Published/Released on August 13, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 21, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

[colored_box]We always hesitate to call retraction statements “models” of anything, but this one comes pretty close to being a paragon. . Psychology researchers in Germany and Scotland have retracted their 2018 paper in Acta Psychologica after learning of a coding error in their work that proved fatal to the... More

[colored_box]We always hesitate to call retraction statements “models” of anything, but this one comes pretty close to being a paragon. . Psychology researchers in Germany and Scotland have retracted their 2018 paper in Acta Psychologica after learning of a coding error in their work that proved fatal to the results. That much is routine. Remarkable in this case is how the authors lay out what happened next. . The study, “Auditory (dis-)fluency triggers sequential processing adjustments:" . investigated as to whether the challenge to understand speech signals in normal-hearing subjects would also lead to sequential processing adjustments if the processing fluency of the respective auditory signals changes from trial to trial. To that end, we used spoken number words (one to nine) that were either presented with high (clean speech) or low perceptual fluency (i.e., vocoded speech as used in cochlear implants-Experiment 1; speech embedded in multi-speaker babble noise as typically found in bars-Experiment 2). Participants had to judge the spoken number words as smaller or larger than five. Results show that the fluency effect (performance difference between high and low perceptual fluency) in both experiments was smaller following disfluent words. Thus, if it’s hard to understand, you try harder. .

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Advancing research integrity: a programme to embed good practice in Africa (Papers: Anke Rohwer, et al | 2019)

Published/Released on August 13, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 18, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Abstract In Africa, training programmes as well as institutional policies on research integrity are lacking. Institutions have a responsibility to oversee research integrity through various efforts, including policies and training. We developed, implemented and evaluated an institutional approach to promote research integrity at African institutions, comprising... More

Abstract In Africa, training programmes as well as institutional policies on research integrity are lacking. Institutions have a responsibility to oversee research integrity through various efforts, including policies and training. We developed, implemented and evaluated an institutional approach to promote research integrity at African institutions, comprising a workshop for researchers ("bottom-up") and discussions with senior faculty on institutional policies ("top-down"). During the first day, we facilitated a workshop to introduce research integrity and promote best practices with regards to authorship, plagiarism, redundant publication and conflicts of interest. We used a variety of interactive teaching approaches to facilitate learning, including individual and group activities, small group discussions and case-based learning. We met with senior faculty on the following day to provide feedback and insights from the workshop, review current institutional policies and provide examples of what other research groups are doing. We evaluated the process. Participants actively engaged in discussions, recognised the importance of the topic and acknowledged that poor practices occurred at their institution. Discussions with senior researchers resulted in the establishment of a working group tasked with developing a publication policy for the institution. Our approach kick-started conversations on research integrity at institutions. There is a need for continued discussions, integrated training programmes and implementation of institutional policies and guidelines to promote good practices. Keywords: Research integrity, Africa, institution, publication policy, workshop

Rohwer, A., Wager, E. & Young, T. (2019). Advancing research integrity: a programme to embed good practice in Africa. Pan African Medical Journal. 33. 10.11604/pamj.2019.33.298.17008. Publisher (Open Access): http://www.panafrican-med-journal.com/content/article/33/298/full/

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Long-Term Agreement for Services (LTAS) for the Provision of Global Research Quality Assurance Services and an Ethical Review Facility for Evidence Generation (Request for proposal | August 2019)

Published/Released on August 10, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 13, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

UNICEF is putting out a call for tenders for a Global Ethical Review Facility for the organisation. This would entail undertaking ethical reviews of evidence generation projects across the organization and providing advice on possible mitigation strategies. Information can be found here: https://www.ungm.org/public/Notice/95212 Gabrielle Berman, PhD Senior Advisor... More

UNICEF is putting out a call for tenders for a Global Ethical Review Facility for the organisation. This would entail undertaking ethical reviews of evidence generation projects across the organization and providing advice on possible mitigation strategies. Information can be found here: https://www.ungm.org/public/Notice/95212 Gabrielle Berman, PhD Senior Advisor - Ethics in Evidence Generation UNICEF Innocenti Via degli Alfani, 58 Firenze, Italia 50122 Skype: gabrielle.berman Less

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China approves ethics advisory group after CRISPR-babies scandal – Nature (Hepeng Jia | August 2019)

Bioethicists hope a national committee will help close loopholes in the country’s biomedical ethics regulations.

China will establish a national committee to advise the government on research-ethics regulations. The decision comes less than a year after a Chinese scientist sparked an international outcry over... More

Bioethicists hope a national committee will help close loopholes in the country’s biomedical ethics regulations.

China will establish a national committee to advise the government on research-ethics regulations. The decision comes less than a year after a Chinese scientist sparked an international outcry over claims that he had created the world’s first genome-edited babies. The country's most powerful policymaking body, the Central Comprehensively Deepening Reforms Commission of the ruling Chinese Communist Party, headed by President Xi Jinping, approved at the end of last month a plan to form the committee. According to Chinese media, it will strengthen the coordination and implementation of a comprehensive and consistent system of ethics governance for science and technology. The government has released few details on how the committee will work. But Qiu Renzong, a bioethicist at the Chinese Academy of Social Science in Beijing, says it could help to reduce the fragmentation in biomedical ethics regulations across ministries, identifying loopholes in the enforcement of regulations and advise the government on appropriate punishments for those who violate the rules.

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(Australia) Materials scientist up to five retractions as publishers investigate dozens of his papers – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | August 2019)

Published/Released on August 06, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 9, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

A materials scientist in Australia, by way of Iran, has recently had five papers retracted for duplicating his prior work, and the reader who brought the issue to publishers’ attention says it could affect some 100 articles. Ali Nazari, now of Swinburne University of Technology in... More

A materials scientist in Australia, by way of Iran, has recently had five papers retracted for duplicating his prior work, and the reader who brought the issue to publishers’ attention says it could affect some 100 articles. Ali Nazari, now of Swinburne University of Technology in Australia, was at Islamic Azad University in Iran when he published the five papers in Energy and Buildings, an Elsevier title, in 2010 and 2011. The retractions came sometime after January of this year, when an anonymous reader contacted Elsevier about dozens of Nazari’s papers. A typical notice, for “Physical, mechanical and thermal properties of concrete in different curing media containing ZnO2 nanoparticles,” reads:

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Does psychology have a conflict-of-interest problem? – Nature (Tom Chivers | July 2019)

Published/Released on August 02, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 5, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Some star psychologists don’t disclose in research papers the large sums they earn for talking about their work. Is that a concern?

Generation Z has made Jean Twenge a lot of money. As a psychologist at San Diego State University in California, she studies... More

Some star psychologists don’t disclose in research papers the large sums they earn for talking about their work. Is that a concern?

Generation Z has made Jean Twenge a lot of money. As a psychologist at San Diego State University in California, she studies people born after the mid-1990s, the YouTube-obsessed group that spends much of its time on Instagram, Snapchat and other social-media platforms. Thanks to smartphones and sharing apps, Generation Z has grown up to be more narcissistic, anxious and depressed than older cohorts, she argues. Twenge calls them the ‘iGen’ generation, a name she says she coined. And in 2010, she started a business, iGen Consulting, “to advise companies and organizations on generational differences based on her expertise and research on the topic”. Twenge has “spoken at several large corporations including PepsiCo, McGraw-Hill, nGenera, Nielsen Media, and Bain Consulting”, one of her websites notes. She delivers anything from 20-minute briefings to half-day workshops, and is also available to speak to parents’ groups, non-profit organizations and educational establishments. In e-mail exchanges, she declined to say how much she earns from her advisory work, but fees for star psychologists can easily reach tens of thousands of dollars for a single speech, and possibly much more, several experts told Nature. Twenge’s academic papers don’t mention her paid speeches and consulting. Yet that stands in stark contrast to the conflict-of-interest (COI) guidelines issued by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), an influential organization whose standards have been widely adopted by many medical and some psychology journals. Those guidelines say that such ‘personal fees’ should be declared as potential COIs in research papers because readers should be made aware of any financial interests that they might perceive as potentially influencing the findings.

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Why we shouldn’t take peer review as the ‘gold standard’ – The Washington Post (Paul D. Thacker and Jon Tennant | August 2019)

Published/Released on August 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

It’s too easy for bad actors to exploit the process and mislead the public

In July, India’s government dismissed a research paper finding that the country’s economic growth had been overestimated, saying the paper had not been “peer... More

It’s too easy for bad actors to exploit the process and mislead the public

In July, India’s government dismissed a research paper finding that the country’s economic growth had been overestimated, saying the paper had not been “peer reviewed.” At a conference for plastics engineers, an economist from an industry group dismissed environmental concerns about plastics by claiming that some of the underlying research was “not peer reviewed.” And the Trump administration — not exactly known for its fealty to science — attempted to reject a climate change report by stating, incorrectly, that it lacked peer review.

Researchers commonly refer to peer review as the “gold standard,” which makes it seem as if a peer-reviewed paper — one sent by journal editors to experts in the field who assess and critique it before publication — must be legitimate, and one that’s not reviewed must be untrustworthy. But peer review, a practice dating to the 17th century, is neither golden nor standardized. Studies have shown that journal editors prefer reviewers of the same gender, that women are underrepresented in the peer review process, and that reviewers tend to be influenced by demographic factors like the author’s gender or institutional affiliation. Shoddy work often makes it past peer reviewers, while excellent research has been shot down. Peer reviewers often fail to detect bad research, conflicts of interest and corporate ghostwriting.

Meanwhile, bad actors exploit the process for professional or financial gain, leveraging peer review to mislead decision-makers. For instance, the National Football League used the words “peer review” to fend off criticism of studies by the Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Committee, a task force the league founded in 1994, which found little long-term harm from sport-induced brain injuries in players. But the New York Times later discovered that the scientists involved had omitted more than 100 diagnosed concussions from their studies. What’s more, the NFL’s claim that the research had been rigorously vetted ignored that the process was incredibly contentious: Some reviewers were adamant that the papers should not have been published at all.

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(US/China) China computer research body cuts ties with IEEE in protest at decision to bar Huawei from peer review – South China Post (Meng Jing | May 2019)

Published/Released on July 31, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 21, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

A Chinese computer professionals body announced that it is suspending ties with the world’s largest engineers association based in the US, as a controversy over the latter’s move to ban Huawei Technologies from peer reviewing research deepens. The Beijing-based China Computer Federation said in a statement on Thursday that it... More

A Chinese computer professionals body announced that it is suspending ties with the world’s largest engineers association based in the US, as a controversy over the latter’s move to ban Huawei Technologies from peer reviewing research deepens. The Beijing-based China Computer Federation said in a statement on Thursday that it would suspend “its communication and collaboration” with a division of the New York-based Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), just hours after the latter confirmed that it would bar Huawei employees from its peer preview process in order to comply with new US government restrictions. As part of the protest, the CCF, which is listed as one of IEEE’s “sister societies” on its website, said it would also delete some IEEE journals on its list. The move came after at least two professors from China’s elite Peking University and Tsinghua University publicly announced their resignation from the IEEE in protest at its move to bar Huawei employees from the peer review process.

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(Australia) Medicare data used to recruit people with bipolar for research – Sydney Morning Herald (Kate Aubusson | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 29, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

A letter sent to almost 50,000 patients prescribed lithium inviting them to take part in a bipolar study has raised questions about how Medicare stores and uses private healthcare information. [colored_box]UNSW psychiatrist Professor Gordon Parker first became aware of a study investigating the genetics of bipolar when a former patient... More

A letter sent to almost 50,000 patients prescribed lithium inviting them to take part in a bipolar study has raised questions about how Medicare stores and uses private healthcare information. [colored_box]UNSW psychiatrist Professor Gordon Parker first became aware of a study investigating the genetics of bipolar when a former patient sent him an angry email accusing him of breaching her privacy. . “She was furious with me, believing that she was contacted by Medicare because I had blown her confidentiality,” he said. . But the letter had been sent by the Department of Health Services (DHS) on behalf of a research team at QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute inviting recipients to participate in a study exploring potential biomarkers for bipolar disorder. .

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6th World Conference on Research Integrity

Published/Released on July 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 29, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Videos and powerpoints now available online from 6th WCRI: Post-conference updates http://wcri2019.org/index/programme/archive-plenary

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AMWA–EMWA–ISMPP joint position statement on predatory publishing (Papers: American Medical Writers Association, et al | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 12, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

The American Medical Writers Association (AMWA), the European Medical Writers Association (EMWA) and the International Society for Medical Publication Professionals (ISMPP) recognize the challenges to scientific publishing being posed by predatory journals and their publishers, which employ practices undermining the quality, integrity and reliability of published scientific research. This... More

The American Medical Writers Association (AMWA), the European Medical Writers Association (EMWA) and the International Society for Medical Publication Professionals (ISMPP) recognize the challenges to scientific publishing being posed by predatory journals and their publishers, which employ practices undermining the quality, integrity and reliability of published scientific research. This joint position statement complements several other sets of guidelines that have helped define the characteristics of a predatory journal1–

American Medical Writers Association, European Medical Writers Association & International Society for Medical Publication Professionals (2019) AMWA–EMWA–ISMPP joint position statement on predatory publishing,Current Medical Research and Opinion,35:9, 1657-1658,10.1080/03007995.2019.1646535 Publisher (Open Access): https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/03007995.2019.1646535

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Fudged research results erode people’s trust in experts – The Conversation (Gavin Moodie | July 2019)

Reports of research misconduct have been prominent recently and probably reflect wider problems of relying on dated integrity protections. The recent reports are from Retraction Watch, which is a blog that reports on the withdrawal of articles by academic journals. The site’s... More

Reports of research misconduct have been prominent recently and probably reflect wider problems of relying on dated integrity protections. The recent reports are from Retraction Watch, which is a blog that reports on the withdrawal of articles by academic journals. The site’s database reports that journals have withdrawn a total of 247 papers with an Australian author going back to the 1980s. This compares with 324 papers withdrawn with Canadian authors, 582 from the UK and 24 from New Zealand. Australian retractions are 1.2% of all retractions reported on the site, a fraction of Australia’s 4% share of all research publications.

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How to organize a conference that’s open to everyone – Nature (Nic Fleming | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 24, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 17, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

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(Australia) ‘Bad science’: Australian studies found to be unreliable, compromised – Sydney Morning Herald (Liam Mannix | July 2019)

Hundreds of scientific research papers published by Australian scientists have been found to be unreliable or compromised, fuelling calls for a national science watchdog. For the first time, a team of science writers behind Retraction Watch has put together a database of compromised scientific research in Australia. Over the past two... More

Hundreds of scientific research papers published by Australian scientists have been found to be unreliable or compromised, fuelling calls for a national science watchdog. For the first time, a team of science writers behind Retraction Watch has put together a database of compromised scientific research in Australia. Over the past two decades, 247 scientific research papers - some associated with the country's most reputable universities - have been found to be compromised.

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Meet the woman who’s tracking down systematic research fraud – Elsevier (Jennifer A. Byrne and Christopher Tancock | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 19, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 6, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

The topic of research fraud is a serious – and growing issue. In this article, we interview Professor Jennifer A. Byrne about her work in identifying systematic fraud, the software she’s helped develop and the pioneering work she’s been doing to promote a better appreciation... More

The topic of research fraud is a serious – and growing issue. In this article, we interview Professor Jennifer A. Byrne about her work in identifying systematic fraud, the software she’s helped develop and the pioneering work she’s been doing to promote a better appreciation and regard for the importance of a “clean” body of research literature. [colored_box]Tell us a little about your background and research interests. I’m a molecular biologist and a cancer researcher. My research interests include studying the functions of specific genes in cancer, investigating the genetic basis of childhood cancer predisposition, and studying the operations of cancer biobanks. . How did you begin your work on (systematic) fraud? This started by accident, when I read five papers about a gene that my team had identified years before. These papers were very similar, even sharing particular nucleotide (or gene) sequence reagents. I could also see that the same reagent was being used in different ways, which couldn’t be right. Further analyses revealed that some reagents were wrongly identified, meaning that some reported results were impossible. When I realised that many other papers had these same types of errors, I fell into a strange new scientific reality, where I’ve been ever since. .

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Australian universities must wake up to the risks of researchers linked to China’s military – The Conversation (Clive Hamilton | July 2019)

Two Australian universities, University of Technology Sydney and Curtin University, are conducting internal reviews of their funding and research approval procedures after Four Corners’ revealed their links to researchers whose work has materially assisted China’s human rights abuses against the More

Two Australian universities, University of Technology Sydney and Curtin University, are conducting internal reviews of their funding and research approval procedures after Four Corners’ revealed their links to researchers whose work has materially assisted China’s human rights abuses against the Uyghur minority in Xinjiang province. UTS, in particular, is in the spotlight because of a major research collaboration with CETC, the Chinese state-owned military research conglomerate. In a response to Four Corners, UTS expressed dismay at the allegations of human rights violations in Xinjiang, which were raised in a Human Rights Watch report earlier this year. Yet, UTS has been aware of concerns about its collaboration with CETC for two years. When I met with two of the university’s deputy vice chancellors in 2017 to ask them about their work with CETC, they dismissed the concerns.

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UK universities compliance with the Concordat to Support Research Integrity: findings from cross-sectional time-series – PeerJ (Elizabeth Wager | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 16, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 12, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

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Tell the World – Exposing how China is creating the world’s largest prison – ABC Four Corners (July 2019)

On 15th July, ABC 4Corners ran a documentary examining develop the use of AI to profile and track activities non-Han populations in China. One Australian commentator argued that, in providing technical assistance, Australian universities were being ‘complicit in the human rights abuses’ (Assoc Prof James Leibold, La Trobe University). UTS told 4Corners... More

On 15th July, ABC 4Corners ran a documentary examining develop the use of AI to profile and track activities non-Han populations in China. One Australian commentator argued that, in providing technical assistance, Australian universities were being ‘complicit in the human rights abuses’ (Assoc Prof James Leibold, La Trobe University). UTS told 4Corners that it was reviewing its relationships with a Chinese state-owned military tech company while Curtin is reviewing its research approval procedures. Other universities may want to consider the mechanisms that they have that allow them to explore the ethics of the end use of technology that they develop and the degree to which it might be intended for or repurposed for the use of state security or military purposes. The biomedical literature has explored the dangers of dual use, but the 4Corners investigation pointed to problems that are much easier to anticipate, in this case work contracted directly with Australian university partners by Chinese state enterprises with military connections. ASSOC PROF. JAMES LEIBOLD, ethnic policy in China, La Trobe University: I think… universities here in Australia that have connections with any Party State company, particularly in the military or security sector, needs to end those contracts, and to pull out of those collaborative arrangement. I mean, essentially by doing that, we're being complicit in the human rights abuses that are occurring in Xinjiang and in China more widely. EXCERPT FROM THE ITEM

"People started to literally disappear, communities were being emptied of adult men and women." China researcher

It's a remote corner of the world, but what is taking place there is nothing short of breathtaking. "My older brother, younger brothers and two younger sisters, five siblings were all taken by... masked police. Heavily armed Special Forces police raided their home and taken (sic) them by covering their face and shackling them in front of the kids." Australian Uyghur Xinjiang province is a vast area of deserts and mountains where the ancient Silk Road once ran. Today its Uyghur population is being systematically rounded up with estimates of as many as a million citizens being held in detention.

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Ethical Considerations for Disseminating Research Findings on Gender-Based Violence, Armed Conflict, and Mental Health: A Case Study from Rural Uganda (Papers: Jennifer J. Mootz, et al | June 2019)

Published/Released on July 12, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Abstract Gender-based violence (GBV) is a major public health problem that is exacerbated in armed conflict settings. While specialized guidelines exist for conducting research with GBV, guidance on disseminating findings from GBV research is scant. This paper describes ethical considerations of designing and disseminating research findings... More

Abstract Gender-based violence (GBV) is a major public health problem that is exacerbated in armed conflict settings. While specialized guidelines exist for conducting research with GBV, guidance on disseminating findings from GBV research is scant. This paper describes ethical considerations of designing and disseminating research findings on GBV, armed conflict, and mental health (including alcohol misuse) in conflict-affected settings in Northeastern Uganda. Following completion of two research studies, we conducted a half-day dissemination meeting with local community professionals (n=21) aged 24 to 60. Attendees were divided into small groups and given a quiz-style questionnaire on research findings to prompt discussion. Two primary ethical tensions arose. One ethical consideration was how to disseminate research findings equitably at the participant level after having taken care to collect data using safe and unharmful methods. Another ethical issue concerned how to transparently share findings of widespread problems in a hopeful and contextualized way in order to facilitate community response. We recommend planning for dissemination a priori, engaging with partners at local levels, and grounding dissemination for action in evidence-based practices.

Mootz, J. J., Taylor, L., Milton L. Khoshnood, W. & Khoshnood, K. (2019) Ethical Considerations for Disseminating Research Findings on Gender-Based Violence, Armed Conflict, and Mental Health: A Case Study from Rural Uganda. Health and Human Rights Journal. Publisher (Open Access): https://www.hhrjournal.org/2019/06/ethical-considerations-for-disseminating-research-findings-on-gender-based-violence-armed-conflict-and-mental-health-a-case-study-from-rural-uganda/

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More detailed guidance on the inclusion/exclusion of retracted articles in systematic reviews is needed (Papers: July 2019)

Published/Released on July 12, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 20, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

[colored_box]There are currently no clear guidelines on how to proceed when a retracted article is selected in the systematic review process. The Cochrane handbook provides information only on how to identify retracted articles within the scientific literature, instead of clear guidance and criteria for inclusion in the systematic review... More

[colored_box]There are currently no clear guidelines on how to proceed when a retracted article is selected in the systematic review process. The Cochrane handbook provides information only on how to identify retracted articles within the scientific literature, instead of clear guidance and criteria for inclusion in the systematic review or not [1]. Other guidelines for conducting systematic reviews do not address this topic [2,3]. Common sense would indicate the exclusion from a systematic review of a study that was retracted because of faked or unreliable data [4]. .

Faggion, C. M., Jr. "More detailed guidance on the inclusion/exclusion of retracted articles in systematic reviews is needed." Journal of Clinical Epidemiology. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclinepi.2019.07.006 Publisher: https://www.jclinepi.com/article/S0895-4356(19)30573-6/abstract

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The Rise of Junk Science – The Walrus (Alex Gillis | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 09, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 23, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

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Scandal-weary Swedish government takes over research-fraud investigations – Nature (Holly Else | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 09, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 26, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

The Research Misconduct Board is one of the first national agencies tasked with investigating serious research misconduct.

Bruised by a string of high-profile scientific-misconduct cases, Sweden has laid the legislative groundwork for a government agency that will handle all allegations of serious More

The Research Misconduct Board is one of the first national agencies tasked with investigating serious research misconduct.

Bruised by a string of high-profile scientific-misconduct cases, Sweden has laid the legislative groundwork for a government agency that will handle all allegations of serious research misconduct. The country follows in the footsteps of neighbouring Denmark, which created the world’s first such agency in 2017. [colored_box]Proponents say that handling research-misconduct investigations centrally should ensure equal, impartial treatment. But others say the move will divert resources and attention away from less serious breaches that universities will continue to deal with in-house and which, they argue, cumulatively do more damage than some more serious misdemeanours. . The way in which Swedish research institutes handle allegations of research misconduct has come under fire in recent years — thanks in part to the case of trachea surgeon Paolo Macchiarini. Macchiarini had been accused of misconduct relating to trials of an experimental trachea-transplant method, in which some patients died. On three occasions in 2015, the prestigious Karolinska Institute in Stockholm cleared him, but independent investigations commissioned by the Karolinska later found that he had committed misconduct. A 2016 independent commission concluded that the institute’s procedures were flawed. .

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Farewell authors, hello contributors – Nature (Alex Holcombe | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 05, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

More disciplines must embrace a system of academic credit that rewards a greater range of roles more specifically, says Alex Holcombe.

We graduate students flocked to our department’s ‘sherry hour’ — it meant free drinks. As I fished around in the beer bucket, a... More

More disciplines must embrace a system of academic credit that rewards a greater range of roles more specifically, says Alex Holcombe.

We graduate students flocked to our department’s ‘sherry hour’ — it meant free drinks. As I fished around in the beer bucket, a friendly professor struck up a conversation. He needed a programmer, and my skills fit the bill. He offered to pay. I could have used the money, but knew that dollars wouldn’t get me a professorship. For that, what I needed was authorship. But the professor told me that “just programming” did not merit authorship. According to the journals in our field, becoming an author required participation in the conception or design of the experiment, the data analysis and interpretation, and the writing. These roles were already spoken for. So, the next day, I was back in my adviser’s lab, conducting experiments and writing them up — doing what I had to do to get my name on papers. Twenty years on, to my chagrin, I resemble that professor from sherry hour. I’m too busy to do everything myself, so I’m looking for someone who can program. The shortage of researchers with specialized skills, such as programming, should ease if more journal publishers adopt a better way to document who does what in research: a function provided by the machine-readable classification system CRediT (the Contributor Roles Taxonomy). Launched in 2014, CRediT allows contributors to report the specific tasks (such as data collection or statistics) they performed in a paper’s production. We need to make this routine across most of the sciences.

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Debriefing for ego threat may require more than we thought – Psychology & More (Dana C. Leighton, Ph.D. | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 7, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

When social psychologists manipulate a participant’s attitudes or beliefs, we have an ethical obligation to undo that manipulation. I explain it to my students as “putting the participant back the way we found them.” We frequently use a debriefing procedure, in the form of a written and/or (as in... More

When social psychologists manipulate a participant’s attitudes or beliefs, we have an ethical obligation to undo that manipulation. I explain it to my students as “putting the participant back the way we found them.” We frequently use a debriefing procedure, in the form of a written and/or (as in the case of my lab) verbal notice something to the effect of “yuk yuk, gosh, ya know what? we were just kidding. the thing you (read/did) was fake, we made it up, and it doesn’t mean anything.” Here is an example from the verbal debriefing script I used in a study several years ago that presented participants with a fake newspaper article about vandalism by University of Texas students.

I want to thank you for your participation here today and for your contribution to this project. We really appreciate your help with this work. Let me tell you a little bit about what we are trying to study.

First, we want to assure you that the incident you read about never happened on the campus. We created a fake newspaper article about it in order to better understand how people respond to these kinds of situations. To our knowledge, no University of Texas students have ever been involved in such an incident.

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The full article is behind a paywall, but here's the reference: Miketta, S., & Friese, M. (2019). Debriefed but still troubled? About the (in)effectiveness of postexperimental debriefings after ego threat. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Advance online publication. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/pspa0000155 Less

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Singapore joins the rise of research integrity networks – Nature Index (Dalmeet Singh Chawla | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 3, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Global effort to combat research misconduct gathers pace.

Research integrity professionals in Singapore have responded to a high-profile case of research misconduct by launching a professional network to discuss research integrity. In a scandal that has rocked the island nation’s close-knit... More

Global effort to combat research misconduct gathers pace.

Research integrity professionals in Singapore have responded to a high-profile case of research misconduct by launching a professional network to discuss research integrity. In a scandal that has rocked the island nation’s close-knit research community during the past three years, two researchers at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) had their doctorate degrees revoked after being found guilty of falsifying data. The scandal led to the retraction and correction of several studies and resulted in Ravi Kambadur, the group’s leader — who had joint appointments at the NTU and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (ASTAR) — being dismissed for negligence.

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Why India is striking back against predatory journals – Nature (Bhushan Patwardhan | July 2019)

Published/Released on July 02, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Our foe is determined and adaptable, says Bhushan Patwardhan. A list of credible titles is the latest salvo in the fight against shoddy scholarship.

According to 2015 estimates, more than 8,000 predatory journals churn out more than 400,000 items a year, and India —... More

Our foe is determined and adaptable, says Bhushan Patwardhan. A list of credible titles is the latest salvo in the fight against shoddy scholarship.

According to 2015 estimates, more than 8,000 predatory journals churn out more than 400,000 items a year, and India — which has also seen a spurt in high-quality scientific publications — contributes more than one-third of the articles in predatory publications. Last month, India launched its latest salvo against the ‘pay and publish trash’ culture that sustains predatory journals. Over several months, more than 30 organizations representing universities and academic disciplines have vetted journals to release a reference list of respectable titles. Predators sabotaged our last attempt. We hope this better-curated list will help to cut off the supply of manuscripts to the unscrupulous operators that profit financially by undercutting academic quality. Fending off the attack of trash science will be a long battle. Predatory journals have severely compromised scientific scholarship. They collect fees, but do not perform peer review or other promised services. My country’s experience so far shows both what makes an academic enterprise vulnerable to predatory publishers, and the coordinated efforts necessary to thwart them.

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Forced Migration Review – Issue 61 (Papers: Marion Couldrey and Jenny Peebles Editors | June 2019)

the ETHICS issue exploring ethical questions that confront us in our work

We each live according to our own personal code of ethics but what moral principles guide our work? The 19... More

the ETHICS issue exploring ethical questions that confront us in our work

We each live according to our own personal code of ethics but what moral principles guide our work? The 19 feature theme articles in this issue debate many of the ethical questions that confront us in programming, research, safeguarding and volunteering, and in our use of data, new technologies, messaging and images. Prepare to be enlightened, unsettled and challenged. This issue is being published in tribute to Barbara Harrell-Bond, founder of the Refugee Studies Centre and FMR, who died in July 2018. Forced Migration Review issue 61 www.fmreview.org/ethics PDF copy of this edition Contents
  • 4 Big data, little ethics: confidentiality and consent Nicole Behnam and Kristy Crabtree
  • 7 New technologies in migration: human rights impacts Petra Molnar
  • 9 Social media screening: Norway’s asylum system Jan-Paul Brekke and Anne Balke Staver
  • 12 Developing ethical guidelines for research Christina Clark-Kazak
  • 15 ‘Over-researched’ and ‘under-researched’ refugees Naohiko Omata
  • 18 Research fatigue among Rwandan refugees in Uganda Cleophas Karooma
  • 20 Over-researching migration ‘hotspots’? Ethical issues from the Carteret Islands Johannes M Lutz
  • 23 Ethics and accountability in researching sexual violence against men and boys Sarah Chynoweth and Sarah Martin
  • 26 Ethics and consent in settlement service delivery Carla Nayton and Sally Baker
  • 28 Ethical primary research by humanitarian actors Prisca Benelli and Tamara Low
  • 30 EU migration strategy: compromising principled humanitarian action Anaïs Faure Atger
  • 33 A humanitarian approach to travel medicine? Marta Aleksandra Balinska
  • 36 Principled humanitarian assistance and non-State armed groups Ruta Nimkar, Viren Falcao, Matthew Tebbutt and Emily Savage
  • 39 Ethical dilemmas posed by unethical behaviour by persons of concern Anna Turus
  • 41 Ethical quandaries in volunteering Ashley Witcher
  • 44 The ethical use of images and messaging Dualta Roughneen
  • 47 Representing refugees in advocacy campaigns Natalie Slade
  • 49 Putting safeguarding commitments into practice Agnes Olusese and Catherine Hingley
  • 52 Safeguarding in conflict and crisis Sarah Blakemore and Rosa Freedman Tribute to Barbara Harrell-Bond
  • 55 A Life Not Ordinary: our colleague Barbara Harrell-Bond Matthew Gibney, Dawn Chatty and Roger Zetter
  • 56 A lifelong commitment to justice HRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal of Jordan
  • 58 A refugee-centred perspective Anita H Fábos
  • 60 Building expert witness reports: Barbara’s legacy Maja Grundler
  • 62 The helpfulness of Imposing Aid: a tribute from the Refugee Law Project Chris Dolan
  • 65 Barbara’s ethics of antagonism Joshua Craze
  • 67 AMERA: delivering a refugee-centred approach to protection Sarah Elliott and Megan Denise Smith
  • 69 From a critique of camps to better forms of aid Alyoscia D’Onofrio
  • 72 Resist injustice Olivier Rukundo
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Fraud In A Leading UK Scientist’s Lab – BuzzFeed News (Peter Aldhous | July 2019)

David Latchman was never punished for leading a University College London lab that published more than a dozen fraudulent studies, according to newly released investigation documents.

David Latchman, a leading geneticist and one of the highest-paid university leaders in the... More

David Latchman was never punished for leading a University College London lab that published more than a dozen fraudulent studies, according to newly released investigation documents.

David Latchman, a leading geneticist and one of the highest-paid university leaders in the UK, was last year found responsible for failing to properly supervise a lab in which widespread scientific fraud occurred over many years. Two investigation reports found data falsification in a total of nine scientific papers published by members of a lab Latchman ran at University College London, according to documents released to BuzzFeed News under a Freedom of Information request. Latchman did not have direct involvement in the manipulation and reuse of images to falsify scientific results, investigators found.

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Mice are not people: Fighting spin in medical science – CBC (Kelly Crowe | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 4, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

There was big news in baldness this week — for some furry rodents

"A cure for baldness could be on the way." That was the big news in baldness this week as headlines announced a "critical breakthrough," along with photos of More

There was big news in baldness this week — for some furry rodents

"A cure for baldness could be on the way." That was the big news in baldness this week as headlines announced a "critical breakthrough," along with photos of hairless human heads. It was exciting news — for a mouse. The baldness breakthrough was unpublished research by a commercially sponsored group that used stem cells to grow new hair through the skin of mice.

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Misreporting the science of lab-made organs is unethical, even dangerous – The Conversation (Cathal D. O’Connell | May 2019)

I work in the field of bioprinting, where the aim is to build biological tissues by printing living cells into 3D structures. Last month I found my Facebook news feed plastered with an amazing story about “the first 3D printed heart using a patient’s own cells”. A More

I work in the field of bioprinting, where the aim is to build biological tissues by printing living cells into 3D structures. Last month I found my Facebook news feed plastered with an amazing story about “the first 3D printed heart using a patient’s own cells”. A video showed a beautiful, healthy-looking heart apparently materialising inside a vat of pinkish liquid. Big news. According to an impact tracking algorithm, the story has been picked up by 145 news outlets, tweeted 2,390 times to 3.8 million followers (as of May 27, 2019). Articles on Facebook have at least 13,000 shares, and videos about the story have been viewed well over 3 million times.

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Infecting healthy people in vaccine research can be ethical and necessary – The Conversation (Michael Selgelid & Euzebiusz Jamrozik | June 2019)

Medical experiments involving intentionally infecting people with bacteria, viruses, and parasites are surprisingly common. And they are becoming more common worldwide, particularly in developing countries. The ultimate aim of these “human challenge studies” is usually to test potential new vaccines. However, because of the risks involved, this kind of research raises... More

Medical experiments involving intentionally infecting people with bacteria, viruses, and parasites are surprisingly common. And they are becoming more common worldwide, particularly in developing countries. The ultimate aim of these “human challenge studies” is usually to test potential new vaccines. However, because of the risks involved, this kind of research raises difficult ethical questions. For example, who should be infected? And which pathogens would be too dangerous to use?

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Peer Review Week Is Five! – Scholarly Kitchen (Alice Meadows | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 4, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

It’s hard to believe that this year Peer Review Week (PRW) will celebrate its fifth anniversary. Five years ago, it was literally not even a twinkle in anyone’s eye! So, as we prepare for #PeerRevWk19 (September 16-20), I thought Scholarly Kitchen readers might enjoy a... More

It’s hard to believe that this year Peer Review Week (PRW) will celebrate its fifth anniversary. Five years ago, it was literally not even a twinkle in anyone’s eye! So, as we prepare for #PeerRevWk19 (September 16-20), I thought Scholarly Kitchen readers might enjoy a look back at the history of this annual celebration of the essential role that peer review plays in maintaining scientific and scholarly quality. Year One (September 28 – October 2, 2015) The first ever Peer Review Week was really a piece of last-minute serendipity. It grew out of a conversation in August, 2015 between ORCID, which I had recently joined as Director of Communications, and AAAS*. At ORCID, we were about to launch the beta version of our peer review functionality, enabling organizations to recognize peer review activities by adding them to ORCID records, while AAAS — an ORCID member — had recently acquired PRE (Peer Review Evaluation). So we were brainstorming ways we could work together, and came up with the idea of a week of posts celebrating peer review on the ORCID blog. But then we thought, why stop there!? So we invited a handful of other organizations that we knew were especially interested in the topic to join the celebrations — ScienceOpen, Sense About Science (whose annual lecture that year inspired the dates for Peer Review Week), and Wiley (my former company). We had all of six weeks or so to organize ourselves, so it was a case of all hands on deck, but amazingly we did (just about!) pull it off (see Welcome to Peer Review Week). Much more importantly, it started a wider conversation about the need to regularly celebrate the importance of peer review to scholarly communications, with numerous other organizations expressing interest in participating. Year Two (September 19 – 26, 2016) Thankfully, planning for Peer Review Week 2016 started a lot earlier and involved over 20 organizations, including the original founders. The planning committee decided to choose a theme for each year’s celebrations, starting with “Recognizing Peer Review” for 2016. One of our goals was to  recognize peer review in all its many forms, from grant application through promotion and tenure, to conference abstracts, publications, and more. As part of that effort, we started our now annual week of Peer Review Week posts here on the Kitchen, including an interview with Maryanne Martone of Hypothes.is about the importance of annotations as a form of review, and a conversation between Chefs Alison Mudditt and Karin Wulf, as well as Mary Francis of University of Michigan Press, about peer review in the humanities and social sciences. And we created our own video of interviews with people from a range of organizations about how and why their organizations recognize review.

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Retracted papers die hard: Diederik Stapel and the enduring influence of flawed science (Papers – preprint: Luis Morís Fernández Miguel Vadillo | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 31, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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(US) NIH probe of foreign ties has led to undisclosed firings-and refunds from institutions – Science (Jeffrey Mervis | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 17, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

An aggressive effort by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to enforce rules requiring its grantees to report foreign ties is still gathering steam. But it has already had a major impact on the U.S. biomedical research community. A senior NIH official tells ScienceInsider that universities have fired more... More

An aggressive effort by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to enforce rules requiring its grantees to report foreign ties is still gathering steam. But it has already had a major impact on the U.S. biomedical research community. A senior NIH official tells ScienceInsider that universities have fired more scientists—and refunded more grant money—as a result of the effort than has been publicly known. Since August 2018, Bethesda, Maryland–based NIH has sent roughly 180 letters to more than 60 U.S. institutions about individual scientists it believes have broken NIH rules requiring full disclosure of all sources of research funding. To date, the investigation has led to the well-publicized dismissals of five researchers, all Asian Americans, at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, and Emory University in Atlanta. But other major U.S. research universities have also fired faculty in cases that have remained confidential, according to Michael Lauer, head of NIH’s extramural research program. And some have repaid NIH “hundreds of thousands of dollars” in grants as a result of rule violations, he says. “I can understand why [the universities] aren’t talking about it,” Lauer says. “No organization wants to discuss personnel actions in a public forum.”

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Authorship (NHMRC An Australian Code (2018) good practice guide | June 2019)

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Management of Data and Information in Research (NHMRC An Australian Code (2018) good practice guide | June 2019)

A guide supporting the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research

aContents 1. Introduction 1 2. Responsibilities of institutions 1 ...2.1 Provision of training for researchers 2 More

A guide supporting the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research

aContents 1. Introduction 1 2. Responsibilities of institutions 1 ...2.1 Provision of training for researchers 2 ..2.2 Ownership, stewardship and control of research data and primary materials 2 ...2.3 Storage, retention and disposal 3 ...2.4 Safety, security and confidentiality 3 ...2.5 Access by interested parties 4 ...2.6 Facilities 4 3. Responsibilities of researchers 4 ...3.1 Retention and publication 6 ...3.2 Managing confidential and other sensitive information 7 ...3.3 Acknowledging the use of others’ data 7 ...3.4 Engagement with relevant training 7 4. Breaches of the Code 7 Additional Resources 8

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(US) Google and the University of Chicago Are Sued Over Data Sharing – New York Times (Daisuke Wakabayashi | June 2019)

SAN FRANCISCO — When the University of Chicago Medical Center announced a partnership to share patient data with Google in 2017, the alliance was promoted as a way to unlock information trapped in electronic health records and improve predictive analysis in medicine.

On Wednesday, the... More

SAN FRANCISCO — When the University of Chicago Medical Center announced a partnership to share patient data with Google in 2017, the alliance was promoted as a way to unlock information trapped in electronic health records and improve predictive analysis in medicine.

On Wednesday, the University of Chicago, the medical center and Google were sued in a potential class-action lawsuit accusing the hospital of sharing hundreds of thousands of patients’ records with the technology giant without stripping identifiable date stamps or doctor’s notes.

The suit, filed in United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, demonstrates the difficulties technology companies face in handling health data as they forge ahead into one of the most promising — and potentially lucrative — areas of artificial intelligence: diagnosing medical problems.

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Journal Publishes Concern About Study Using Forced Organ Donation – Medscape (Diana Swift | June 2019)

The Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (CJASN) recently issued an "Expression of Concern" regarding a 2008 article on renal allograft recipients written by Chinese researchers. The Expression of Concern stems from an Australian report More

The Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (CJASN) recently issued an "Expression of Concern" regarding a 2008 article on renal allograft recipients written by Chinese researchers. The Expression of Concern stems from an Australian report published online in February in BMJ Open, which urged the repudiation by English-language journals of more than 445 studies involving 85,477 organ transplants done in China. The reason? Many of the organs used were likely forcibly harvested from Chinese prisoners of conscience, such as practitioners of Falun Gong, Uyghurs, Tibetans, and underground Christians. "We reached out for clarification of the organ source to the senior authors, but one was deceased and the other had left the institution where the research was done," said CJASN Editor-in-Chief Rajnish Mehrotra, MD, MBBS, a professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California Los Angeles.

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Journals’ Plagiarism Detectors May Flag Papers in Error – The Scientist (Diana Kwon | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 25, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 1, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

One recent case, in which a scientist claims his submitted manuscript was rejected despite a lack of actual plagiarism, highlights the limitations of automated tools.

[colored_box]Last week, Jean-François Bonnefon, a behavioral scientist at the French Centre National de la... More

One recent case, in which a scientist claims his submitted manuscript was rejected despite a lack of actual plagiarism, highlights the limitations of automated tools.

[colored_box]Last week, Jean-François Bonnefon, a behavioral scientist at the French Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, tweeted that a scientific manuscript he submitted to a journal had been rejected by a bot. The program had flagged his paper for plagiarism, highlighting the methods, references, and authors’ affiliations. “It would have taken 2 [minutes] for a human to realize the bot was acting up,” Bonnefon wrote in one of his tweets. “But there is obviously no human in the loop here.” . In a massive Twitter thread that followed, several other academics noted having similar experiences. . “I found [Bonnefon’s] experience quite disconcerting,” Bernd Pulverer, chief editor of The EMBO Journal, writes in an email to The Scientist. “Despite all the AI hype, we are miles from automating such a process.” Plagiarism is a complex issue, he adds, and although tools to identify text duplication are an invaluable resource for routine screening, they should not be used in lieu of a human reviewer. .

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Alarmed by new ‘CRISPR babies’ plan, top science figures say they’re powerless to stop it – STAT (Rick Berke | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 24, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 19, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

ASPEN, Colo. — Two influential leaders in science for the first time publicly condemned a Russian biologist who said he plans to produce gene-edited babies but conceded that it was beyond their organizations’ authority to halt him from doing so. In separate interviews with STAT over the weekend,... More

ASPEN, Colo. — Two influential leaders in science for the first time publicly condemned a Russian biologist who said he plans to produce gene-edited babies but conceded that it was beyond their organizations’ authority to halt him from doing so. In separate interviews with STAT over the weekend, Margaret Hamburg, co-chair of an international advisory committee on human genome-editing, and Victor Dzau, president of the U.S. National Academy of Medicine, said they were deeply concerned by the plans outlined by Russian scientist Denis Rebrikov. Still, said Hamburg, “I don’t know where we get the teeth to do some of what may ultimately need to be done’’ to respond in such situations.

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A Russian Biologist Wants To Create More Gene-Edited Babies – NPR (Rob Stein | June 2019)

A Russian scientist says he wants to create more genetically modified babies, flouting international objections that such a step would be premature, unethical and irresponsible. Denis Rebrikov, a molecular biologist who heads a gene-editing lab at the Kulakov National Medical Research Center... More

A Russian scientist says he wants to create more genetically modified babies, flouting international objections that such a step would be premature, unethical and irresponsible. Denis Rebrikov, a molecular biologist who heads a gene-editing lab at the Kulakov National Medical Research Center for Obstetrics, Gynecology and Perinatology in Moscow, claims he has developed a safe — and therefore acceptable — way to create gene-edited babies. "How it can be unethical if we will make [a] healthy baby instead of diseased?" Rebrikov told NPR during his first broadcast interview. "Why? Why [is it] unethical?"

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It’s Time to Lift the Veil on Peer Review – UnDark (Dalmeet Singh Chawla | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 20, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 24, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Data analysis can improve the vetting of scientific papers, but first publishers must agree to make the information public.

THE JOB OF A PEER REVIEWER is thankless. Collectively, academics spend around 70 million hours every year evaluating each other’s manuscripts on the behalf of... More

Data analysis can improve the vetting of scientific papers, but first publishers must agree to make the information public.

THE JOB OF A PEER REVIEWER is thankless. Collectively, academics spend around 70 million hours every year evaluating each other’s manuscripts on the behalf of scholarly journals — and they usually receive no monetary compensation and little if any recognition for their effort. Some do it as a way to keep abreast with developments in their field; some simply see it as a duty to the discipline. Either way, academic publishing would likely crumble without them. In recent years, some scientists have begun posting their reviews online, mainly to claim credit for their work. Sites like Publons allow researchers to either share entire referee reports or simply list the journals for whom they’ve carried out a review. Just seven years old, Publons already boasts more than 1.7 million users. The rise of Publons suggests that academics are increasingly placing value on the work of peer review and asking others, such as grant funders, to do the same. While that’s vital in the publish-or-perish culture of academia, there’s also immense value in the data underlying peer review. Sharing peer review data could help journals stamp out fraud, inefficiency, and systemic bias in academic publishing. In fact, there’s a case to be made that open peer review — in which the content of their reviews is published, sometimes with the name of reviewers who carried out the work — should become the default option in academic publishing.

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What universities can learn from one of science’s biggest frauds – Nature (Holly Else – June 2019)

Published/Released on June 18, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 3, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

Detailed analysis of misconduct investigations into huge research fraud suggests institutional probes aren’t rigorous enough.

By day, Andrew Grey studies bone health. But over the past few years, he’s developed another speciality: the case of one of science’s most prolific fraudsters. From 1996 to 2013,... More

Detailed analysis of misconduct investigations into huge research fraud suggests institutional probes aren’t rigorous enough.

By day, Andrew Grey studies bone health. But over the past few years, he’s developed another speciality: the case of one of science’s most prolific fraudsters. From 1996 to 2013, Yoshihiro Sato, a Japanese bone-health researcher plagiarized work, fabricated data and forged authorships — prompting retractions of more than 60 studies in the scholarly literature so far. Grey and colleagues at the University of Auckland in New Zealand and the University of Aberdeen, UK, are among the researchers who have raised concerns about Sato’s work over the past decade or so, and they have studied the case in detail — in particular, how universities involved in the research investigated concerns about his work and allegations of misconduct. At the World Conference on Research Integrity in Hong Kong from 2 to 5 June, Grey’s team described its years-long efforts to clean up Sato’s literature, and presented its analysis of the inquiries conducted by four universities in Japan and the United States ensnared in the scandal (the team published its analysis of three investigations in a paper in February1). Grey says their findings provide evidence to support a growing view in the academic community: that university investigations into research misconduct are often inadequate, opaque and poorly conducted. They challenge the idea that institutions can police themselves on research integrity and propose that there should be independent organizations to evaluate allegations of research fraud should.

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Guest Post — Open Research in Practice: Moving from Why to How? – Scholarly Kitchen (Fiona Murphy, et al | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 17, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 11, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Today’s research knowledge can be harvested and data analyzed faster than has been possible in all previous generations combined. As a result, Open Research practices and outputs face a number of tensions between initial intentions and unforeseen consequences. For example, the FAIR Data Principles propose... More

Today’s research knowledge can be harvested and data analyzed faster than has been possible in all previous generations combined. As a result, Open Research practices and outputs face a number of tensions between initial intentions and unforeseen consequences. For example, the FAIR Data Principles propose that research data should be Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable — but nothing has prepared us for the use and misuse of personal data. Even if they start out ethically approved and safe in the researcher’s toolkit, they can later be sold to a third party in exchange for analytical services, enabling machines to identify disease states from a picture, classify your intelligence and demographic profile in four “likes” or less, or traffic organs and direct market to those that need them on social media. And so our questions about Open Research are also changing — from “why” to “how” — amidst growing awareness that the required skill sets, both technical and social, are not yet part of the standard training programs for researchers. Consider, for example, the questions and challenges that early career researchers face as they critique a distinguished professor’s work while conducting an open peer review. How do they balance the need for research integrity and rigorous review without career-ending consequences? How do we protect reviewers who review in good faith only to be raked through the coals on social media, while the perpetrators are funded and their work is published. So, if you actually want to practice Open Research, how do you learn about it? How do you balance effort with effect? How do you discover and validate the standards that are being adopted by your communities?

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(US) UCSD has not told women with HIV of data breach, despite researchers’ pleas – inewsource (Jill Castellano & Brad Racino | May 2019)

University of California San Diego officials stonewalled attempts to notify women in an HIV research study that their confidential data was breached more than seven months ago, an inewsource investigation has found. [colored_box]UCSD researchers conducting the EmPower Women study told university officials in October that participants’... More

University of California San Diego officials stonewalled attempts to notify women in an HIV research study that their confidential data was breached more than seven months ago, an inewsource investigation has found. [colored_box]UCSD researchers conducting the EmPower Women study told university officials in October that participants’ names, audio-taped conversations and other sensitive materials were made accessible to everyone working at Christie’s Place, a San Diego nonprofit supporting women with HIV and AIDS. They called the situation “very serious” and said the women affected are “within one of the most vulnerable and marginalized populations.” . But internal emails, reports and meeting minutes chronicle months of communication between lead researcher Jamila Stockman — who pushed for telling two dozen women enrolled in the project about the breach — and UCSD officials concerned about the consequences. .

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(US) FDA says HCMC doctors kept ketamine study going after pledging to stop – Star Tribune (Andy Mannix | June 2019)

Medical staff at HCMC continued to sedate people with ketamine and collect data for a study for months after the hospital’s leadership told elected officials they had voluntarily halted the research in response to questions over ethics and patient safety. New inspection reports from federal regulators also say that doctors... More

Medical staff at HCMC continued to sedate people with ketamine and collect data for a study for months after the hospital’s leadership told elected officials they had voluntarily halted the research in response to questions over ethics and patient safety. New inspection reports from federal regulators also say that doctors involved in the research failed to disclose incidents of patients suffering serious medical complications — such as trouble breathing or high blood pressure — to the committee in charge of keeping study subjects safe. HCMC officials have already responded to the reports, vigorously rebutting many of the findings.

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UGC move to thwart ‘pay and publish trash’ culture – Hindustan Times (Rajeev Mullick | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 14, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 15, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

UGC secretary Rajnish Jain has issued a public notice on academic integrity for Indian academic community dated.

The University Grants Commission (UGC) has made it clear that any publications in predatory, dubious journals or presentations and dubious conferences will not be considered for academic... More

UGC secretary Rajnish Jain has issued a public notice on academic integrity for Indian academic community dated.

The University Grants Commission (UGC) has made it clear that any publications in predatory, dubious journals or presentations and dubious conferences will not be considered for academic selection, confirmation, promotion, performance and appraisal, besides award of scholarship or academic degrees or credits in any form. [colored_box]UGC secretary Rajnish Jain has issued a public notice on academic integrity for Indian academic community dated June 14, 2019. It reads: With immediate effect, research publications only from journals indexed in UCG-CARE List should be used for all academic purposes. Any attempt of compromised academic integrity should be challenged, questioned and de-recognised all levels, it reads. . The UGC has setup a consortium for academics and research ethics (CARE) to identify, monitor and maintain ‘UCG-CARE Reference List of Quality Journals’ available at the , with useful resources as relevant publications, audio visual materials, videos, web link etc. UCG-CARE website also provides FAQ’s, feedback and grievance redressal mechanism. .

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Hyped-up science erodes trust. Here’s how researchers can fight back – Vox (Brian Resnick | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 11, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 18, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Science is often poorly communicated. Researchers can fight back.

In 2018, psychology PhD student William McAuliffe co-published a paper in the prestigious journal Nature Human Behavior. The study’s conclusion — that people become less generous over time when... More

Science is often poorly communicated. Researchers can fight back.

In 2018, psychology PhD student William McAuliffe co-published a paper in the prestigious journal Nature Human Behavior. The study’s conclusion — that people become less generous over time when they make decisions in an environment where they don’t know or interact with other people — was fairly nuanced.

But the university’s press department, perhaps in an attempt to make the study more attractive to news outlets, amped up the finding. The headline of the press release heralding the publication of the study read “Is big-city living eroding our nice instinct?

From there, the study took on a new life as stories in the press appeared with headlines like “City life makes humans less kind to strangers.”

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Better Metadata Could Help Save The World! – Scholarly Kitchen (Alice Meadows | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 11, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 4, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

The title of this post may seem like a farfetched claim, however, no one can deny that we are currently faced with increasingly critical challenges — climate crisis, shrinking biodiversity, hunger, poverty, disease, and more. I think most of us would agree this means it’s essential for the research... More

The title of this post may seem like a farfetched claim, however, no one can deny that we are currently faced with increasingly critical challenges — climate crisis, shrinking biodiversity, hunger, poverty, disease, and more. I think most of us would agree this means it’s essential for the research findings that could help address these challenges to be shared as quickly and widely as possible — and for the data behind those findings to be FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable). And that means…metadata! As a community, we have a collective responsibility for sharing research outputs, including their metadata. That’s why Metadata 2020 is so timely and important (disclaimer: I am co-chair of their Researcher Communications project group). This community-led initiative aims to improve metadata in order to enhance discoverability, encourage new services, create efficiencies, and — ultimately — accelerate scholarly research. Lofty goals, to be sure! Which means that to succeed in achieving them we need the support of everyone who is involved in creating, curating, and consuming metadata. Per the FAIR principles, “Metadata and data should be easy to find for both humans and computers.  Machine-readable metadata are essential for automatic discovery of datasets and services.” Building on this, the Metadata 2020 project group on Best Practices and Principles has developed a set of draft principles, which were recently released for community comment. They state that for metadata to support the community, they should be:

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On the use of blockchain-based mechanisms to tackle academic misconduct (Vijay Mohan | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 08, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 18, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Highlights

  • There exists a Prisoners’ Dilemma in academia, where researchers engage in misconduct in equilibrium.
  • Conventional “centralized” solutions under the current system may not work.
  • New advances in distributed ledger technology, like blockchain, provide a decentralized alternative.
  • The incentive structures in... More

    Highlights

    • There exists a Prisoners’ Dilemma in academia, where researchers engage in misconduct in equilibrium.
    • Conventional “centralized” solutions under the current system may not work.
    • New advances in distributed ledger technology, like blockchain, provide a decentralized alternative.
    • The incentive structures in academia may necessitate a solution involving a permissioned blockchain.
    • Open Science is necessary to fight misconduct.
    Abstract Current incentives for publishing in academic journals result in a “winner-take-all” contest-like situation, with significant benefits for publishing research in quality journals. At the same time, empirically, we observe a greater incidence of research misconduct. The purpose of this paper is to summarize the nature and extent of the misconduct problem, to show why it may persist in the absence of conscious remedial action, and to discuss solutions that help lower the likelihood of spurious research escaping undetected. A simple model is constructed to emphasize that there exists the potential for a Prisoners’ Dilemma in academia, where scholars engage in misconduct at equilibrium (the Academic Dilemma). The paper then examines why conventional “centralized” regulatory solutions under the current system are not likely to succeed in resolving the problem, analyzes the properties of a decentralized solution utilizing blockchains, and argues that once incentive structures in academia are factored in, a permissioned blockchain may emerge as an effective middle-ground solution for mitigating scientific misconduct. In doing so, the paper highlights the importance of new technologies and recent advancements in Open Science for battling misconduct, and takes stock of the evolving nature of academic publishing. Keywords Academic misconduct, Prisoners’ dilemma, Blockchain, Open science, Decentralized cooperation

    Mohan, V. (2019) On the use of blockchain-based mechanisms to tackle academic misconduct. Research Policy. 48(9), November 2019, 103805 Publisher: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0048733319301258

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Credit data generators for data reuse – Nature (Heather H. Pierce, et al | June 2019)

To promote effective sharing, we must create an enduring link between the people who generate data and its future uses, urge Heather H. Pierce and colleagues.

Much effort has gone towards crafting mandates and standards for researchers to share their data1–3. Considerably less time... More

To promote effective sharing, we must create an enduring link between the people who generate data and its future uses, urge Heather H. Pierce and colleagues.

Much effort has gone towards crafting mandates and standards for researchers to share their data1–3. Considerably less time has been spent measuring just how valuable data sharing is, or recognizing the scientific contributions of the people responsible for those data sets. The impact of research continues to be measured by primary publications, rather than by subsequent uses of the data. To incentivize the sharing of useful data, the scientific enterprise needs a well-defined system that links individuals with reuse of data sets they generate4. To further this goal, the Association of American Medical Colleges (where H.H.P. and A.D. work) and the Multi-Regional Clinical Trials Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School (where E.S. and B.E.B. work), along with The New England Journal of Medicine, convened a 2018 workshop of representatives from 50 organizations to discuss and validate such a system. The workshop included major journals, funders, data-citation groups and academic centres (see Supplementary Information, Participant list) and was preceded by numerous meetings. Here we propose a system for leveraging existing initiatives and infrastructure to track the use, reuse and impact of scientific data through the consistent adoption of unique identifiers. Our system begins when researchers deposit a data set that they have generated. It then links every use and published analysis of that data set back to the original researchers (see ‘Virtuous cycle’).

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(Includes an update 07/06/2019) A report about Plan S’s potential effects on journals marks a busy week for the open-access movement – Science (Jeffrey Brainard | March 2019)

Published/Released on June 07, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 7, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

It’s been a busy week for the open-access movement, the effort to make all scientific journal articles immediately free to read. Making that change would require a major shift in most journals’ business models, from one that charges subscribers to read articles to one in which authors pay to... More

It’s been a busy week for the open-access movement, the effort to make all scientific journal articles immediately free to read. Making that change would require a major shift in most journals’ business models, from one that charges subscribers to read articles to one in which authors pay to publish. Among the developments:

  • Many journals aren’t prepared to meet the requirements of Plan S, the proposal largely by European funders to require grantees to publish articles that are immediately open access, a report from a science publishing analytics company says.
  • Springer Nature, one of the largest publishers of scientific journals, and the networking website ResearchGate began an experiment making some articles open access through authors’ profiles on the website.

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(CAN) Pharmacy School Dean Withdraws From New Role After Retracted Book Review – Medscape (Ellie Kincaid | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 07, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 24, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

The incoming dean of a leading Canadian pharmacy school has "voluntarily withdrawn" from the new position after a book review he wrote was retracted from The Lancet in May. The journal retracted a review of Danielle Martin's Better Now: Six Big Ideas to Improve Health Care for All Canadians by Kishor... More

The incoming dean of a leading Canadian pharmacy school has "voluntarily withdrawn" from the new position after a book review he wrote was retracted from The Lancet in May. The journal retracted a review of Danielle Martin's Better Now: Six Big Ideas to Improve Health Care for All Canadians by Kishor Wasan and two coauthors because "substantial passages…match parts of a review of the same book by [journalist] André Picard," the journal wrote in a retraction notice previously reported by Medscape Medical News. Wasan and his coauthors Ellen Wasan and Jawahar Kalra were all at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada, at the time of publication. Kishor Wasan was the corresponding author of the review and had been appointed dean of the University of Toronto's pharmacy school for a 5-year term. Wasan "has voluntarily withdrawn from his upcoming appointment as dean and professor of the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, which had been scheduled to begin July 1, 2019," University of Toronto spokesperson Elizabeth Church told Medscape Medical News.

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Research integrity is much more than misconduct – Nature (C. K. Gunsalus | June 2019)

All researchers should strive to improve the quality, relevance and reliability of their work.

Start a conversation about research integrity and many researchers will assume you’re talking about misconduct. Too often, they are wrong. Research misconduct encompasses fraud, fabrication and plagiarism. It is essential to... More

All researchers should strive to improve the quality, relevance and reliability of their work.

Start a conversation about research integrity and many researchers will assume you’re talking about misconduct. Too often, they are wrong. Research misconduct encompasses fraud, fabrication and plagiarism. It is essential to deal with such dishonesty thoroughly and fairly, but it’s patching up a tear after the damage is done. Research integrity includes such investigations, but it is much more. It is about creating systems that boost the quality, relevance and reliability of all research. The distinction is clear at the 6th World Conference on Research Integrity, being held this week in Hong Kong. Yes, there are sessions on misconduct — but there are many more on improving science overall. The biggest impact on research integrity is achieved through sustained improvements in day-to-day research practices — better record-keeping, vetting experimental designs, techniques to reduce bias, rewards for rigorous work, and incentives for sharing data, code and protocols — rather than narrow efforts to find and punish a few bad actors. (Both are important, of course, and sometimes the same policies can address both problems.)

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“Our current approaches are not working:” Time to make misconduct investigation reports public, says integrity expert – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 9, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

With the 6th World Conference on Research Integrity (WCRI) underway in Hong Kong, C.K. Gunsalus, who has served as a research integrity officer, expert witness in scientific integrity cases, and consultant, argues in Nature this week that universities should “More

With the 6th World Conference on Research Integrity (WCRI) underway in Hong Kong, C.K. Gunsalus, who has served as a research integrity officer, expert witness in scientific integrity cases, and consultant, argues in Nature this week that universities should “Make reports of research misconduct public.” We asked her a few questions about why she has changed her mind about this issue. Retraction Watch (RW): We have of course been campaigning for universities to release investigation reports for some time, and have published a number of them following public records requests and reviews of court documents. What led you to this call to make them public? C.K. Gunsalus (CKG): I argued the opposite position for many years, decades, even. What led me to this call is that our current approaches are not working: not for credibility of investigations, not for reinforcing research integrity, not for protecting the integrity of the research community.

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Plan U: Universal access to scientific and medical research via funder preprint mandates (Papers: Richard Sever, et al | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Abstract Preprint servers such as arXiv and bioRxiv represent a highly successful and relatively low cost mechanism for providing free access to research findings. By decoupling the dissemination of manuscripts from the much slower process of evaluation and certification by journals, preprints also significantly accelerate the... More

Abstract Preprint servers such as arXiv and bioRxiv represent a highly successful and relatively low cost mechanism for providing free access to research findings. By decoupling the dissemination of manuscripts from the much slower process of evaluation and certification by journals, preprints also significantly accelerate the pace of research itself by allowing other researchers to begin building on new results immediately. If all funding agencies were to mandate posting of preprints by grantees—an approach we term Plan U (for “universal”)—free access to the world’s scientific output for everyone would be achieved with minimal effort. Moreover, the existence of all articles as preprints would create a fertile environment for experimentation with new peer review and research evaluation initiatives, which would benefit from a reduced barrier to entry because hosting and archiving costs were already covered.

Sever, R., Eisen, M., Inglis, J. (2019) Plan U: Universal access to scientific and medical research via funder preprint mandates. PLoS Biology 17(6): e3000273. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pbio.3000273 Publisher (Open Access): https://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=10.1371/journal.pbio.3000273

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Knowledge and attitudes among life scientists towards reproducibility within journal articles (Papers: Evanthia Kaimaklioti Samota and Robert P. Davey | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 16, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

Abstract We constructed a survey to understand how authors and scientists view the issues around reproducibility, and how solutions such as interactive figures could enable the reproducibility of experiments from within a research article. This manuscript reports the results of this survey on the views of... More

Abstract We constructed a survey to understand how authors and scientists view the issues around reproducibility, and how solutions such as interactive figures could enable the reproducibility of experiments from within a research article. This manuscript reports the results of this survey on the views of 251 researchers, including authors who have published in eLIFE Sciences, and those who work at the Norwich Biosciences Institutes (NBI). The survey also outlines to what extent researchers are occupied with reproducing experiments themselves and what are their desirable features of an interactive figure. Respondents considered various features for an interactive figure within a research article that would allow for them to better understand and reproduce in situ the experiment presented in the figure. Respondents said that the most important element that would enable the better reproducibility of published research would be that authors describe methods and analyses in detail. The respondents believe that having interactive figures in published papers is a beneficial element. Whilst interactive figures are potential solutions for demonstrating technical reproducibility, we find that there are equally pressing cultural demands on researchers that need to be addressed to achieve greater success in reproducibility in the life sciences.

Samota, E. K. and R. P. Davey (2019). Knowledge and attitudes among life scientists towards reproducibility within journal articles. bioRxiv: 581033. doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/581033 Publisher: https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/581033v2 This article is a preprint and has not been peer-reviewed

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The gold rush: Why open access will boost publisher profits – LSE Impact Blog (Shaun Khoo | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 29, 2019 | Keywords: , ,

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Make reports of research misconduct public – Nature (C. K. Gunsalus | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 30, 2019 | Keywords: , ,

Confronted with bad behaviour, institutions will keep asking the wrong questions until they have to show their working, says C. K. Gunsalus.

During decades as a research-integrity officer, expert witness for misconduct investigations and consultant, I have been inspired — and I have seen... More

Confronted with bad behaviour, institutions will keep asking the wrong questions until they have to show their working, says C. K. Gunsalus.

During decades as a research-integrity officer, expert witness for misconduct investigations and consultant, I have been inspired — and I have seen inexcusable conduct. Even when investigations are exemplary and findings clear, universities rarely report them publicly. That secrecy perpetuates misbehaviour and breeds mistrust — as evidenced by the ongoing revelations of universities that failed to respond appropriately, sometimes for years, to allegations of sexual misconduct. Science is fast becoming more transparent. So, too, should institutional practice. Open misconduct reports would create a virtuous circle. Institutions would learn from their own and others’ investigations. Leaders would be more likely to pay attention to reports that are subject to scrutiny. Honest researchers could see that although groundbreaking science is often uncertain, it is qualitatively different from the conduct that leads to misconduct reviews. We are already seeing such a shift in health care. Last month, a study showed that mortality is lower in UK hospitals in which medical professionals feel that they can talk openly about problems without worrying about repercussions to their careers (V. Toffolutti and D. Stuckler Health Affair. http://doi.org/c6df; 2019). I often find that institutional investigators ask the wrong questions, such as: ‘We don’t have to report this, do we?’, ‘How could anyone think Dr X would do such a thing?’ or (to whistle-blowers) ‘Why would you want to cause trouble for your own research project?’ Investigators pin all the blame on one actor without examining the contributions of co-authors or supervisors of the flawed work. An investigation might stop abruptly if the subject of it resigns. A 2019 paper examining investigations by institutions after the retraction of 12 clinical-trial papers by one research group stated that although investigations lasted for between 8 and 17 months, they did not examine preclinical papers from this group even after receiving detailed, serious concerns about them (A. Grey et al. Res. Integr. Peer Rev. 4, 3; 2019).

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(US/China) Update: In reversal, science publisher IEEE drops ban on using Huawei scientists as reviewers – Science (Jeffrey Mervis | June 2019)

Published/Released on June 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 21, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

*Update, 3 June, 12:15 p.m.: On 2 June, IEEE lifted its ban on using Huawei scientists as journal reviewers, saying it had received “clarification” from the U.S. Department of Commerce on how the government’s recent actions against the company affect its peer-review process. Here is our original story from... More

*Update, 3 June, 12:15 p.m.: On 2 June, IEEE lifted its ban on using Huawei scientists as journal reviewers, saying it had received “clarification” from the U.S. Department of Commerce on how the government’s recent actions against the company affect its peer-review process. Here is our original story from 29 May: A major scientific society has banned employees of Huawei, the Chinese communications giant, from reviewing submissions to its journals because of U.S. government sanctions against the company. The New York City–based Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) told editors of its roughly 200 journals yesterday that it feared “severe legal implications” from continuing to use Huawei scientists as reviewers in vetting technical papers. They can continue to serve on IEEE editorial boards, according to the memo, but “cannot handle any papers” until the sanctions are lifted.

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SPEECH: Actions to advance research integrity – Dr Alan Finkel AO (6th World Conference on Research Integrity | June 2019)

Looking around the room today, I’m reminded that research truly is a human pursuit: it thrives on face-to-face connections. It’s easy to forget that, when you’re a student, and it’s late at night, and you’re the last person left in the lab – again. So, every so often, it’s worth pausing... More

Looking around the room today, I’m reminded that research truly is a human pursuit: it thrives on face-to-face connections. It’s easy to forget that, when you’re a student, and it’s late at night, and you’re the last person left in the lab – again. So, every so often, it’s worth pausing to remember just how many people are out there, working hard, gathering data – just like you. Worldwide, there are more than eight million researchers. Every year, we produce well over a quarter of a million new PhDs. China alone has added more than a million people to its research workforce since 2011. Not all of these researchers will work in academia – but those who do are highly productive. They publish in the order of four million academic journal articles every year, spread across more than 40,000 journals.

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Implementation of a responsible conduct of research education program at Duke University School of Medicine (Papers: Christian Simon, et al 02 June 2019)

Published/Released on June 02, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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(US) Rounding up the Belmont Report Retrospectives – Amp@sand (May 2019)

Last month brought the 40th anniversary of the publishing of the Belmont Report, and along with that milestone came a reflection on how its values, conclusions, and imperatives have changed in the intervening years. A celebration of its durability has been accompanied by a necessary reckoning with the ways... More

Last month brought the 40th anniversary of the publishing of the Belmont Report, and along with that milestone came a reflection on how its values, conclusions, and imperatives have changed in the intervening years. A celebration of its durability has been accompanied by a necessary reckoning with the ways that a 40-year-old document may be ill-equipped to process the ethical issues brought about by technological, cultural, and political changes. Here, we’ve gathered a range of resources that look back on 40 years of the Belmont Report. Safeguards for human studies can’t cope with big data Nature This provocative piece explores the ways in which the Belmont Report is insufficient for dealing with revolutionary digital technologies, arguing that “data science overlooks risks to human participants by default” and that it is “past time for a Belmont 2.0.” That new summit, the author argues, would need to engage with the currently “poorly understood risks and harms” that big data researches poses to humans. A Belmont Report for Health Data (abstract available) The New England Journal of Medicine HIPAA offers robust protection of a limited range of data, but in 2019, the demands on humans’ health data come from far more directions than the 1996 legislation could anticipate. The authors of this NEJM piece call for a coordinated expansion of the scope of ethical review of the gathering, use, and manipulation of health data to account for sources such as “social-media platforms, health and wellness apps, smartphones [and] life insurers,” citing concerns about reidentification of deidentified data, discrimination, health profiling, and more.

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Using ASCO’s Clinical Database for Commercial Research Raises Questions, Ethicists Say – Medscape (Ellie Kincaid | May 2019)

Eleven abstracts of the thousands accepted for publication at this year's annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), one of the largest cancer research conferences in the world, draw upon data collected through a nonprofit subsidiary of ASCO that in 4 years has brought together the... More

Eleven abstracts of the thousands accepted for publication at this year's annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), one of the largest cancer research conferences in the world, draw upon data collected through a nonprofit subsidiary of ASCO that in 4 years has brought together the electronic health records (EHRs) of 1.2 million patients. The ASCO subsidiary — CancerLinQ — will have its own 1200 square foot booth in prime real estate at the entrance to the meeting's exhibit hall. It has received data from 48 healthcare institutions to help them improve care for patients and has compiled a treasure trove of data for researchers studying how expensive cancer drugs work for patients in the real world. But ethicists are concerned that CancerLinQ is allowing companies to sell access to the data after they have been stripped of patient identifiers, without asking for patients' permission. "I think that the ethics of profiting off of someone else's information is dicey and at the very least the patient should go in with their eyes open, and that requires informing them," said Robert Field, PhD, MPH, JD, a professor of law and public health at Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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(Japan) 158 ethics violations found in research by Japan’s NCVC medical institute – The Japan Times (May 2019)

SUITA, OSAKA PREF. - The National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center said Thursday it has found 158 cases of research that was conducted in violation of the country’s ethical standards. The violations include the use of patients’ information without their consent, the NCVC said. There have been no reports of health... More

SUITA, OSAKA PREF. - The National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center said Thursday it has found 158 cases of research that was conducted in violation of the country’s ethical standards. The violations include the use of patients’ information without their consent, the NCVC said. There have been no reports of health damage linked to these cases that involved follow-up research, the institute said. “We deeply apologize for the misconduct,” NCVC President Hisao Ogawa said at a news conference in Suita, where the institute is based.

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(US) ‘Banished’ blood, stool samples from San Diego veterans used in research article, despite federal probe – ienewsource (Brad Racino & Jill Castellano | May 2019)

Two prominent doctors associated with the University of California San Diego and the local VA used blood and stool samples taken from sick veterans to bolster a paper published this month in an academic research journal. The specimens were not supposed to be used, according to... More

Two prominent doctors associated with the University of California San Diego and the local VA used blood and stool samples taken from sick veterans to bolster a paper published this month in an academic research journal. The specimens were not supposed to be used, according to the project’s lead researcher, because they were part of a study that unethically collected biological samples from living subjects without their consent, which investigators called "serious noncompliance." When people volunteer to be human research subjects, they accept potential health risks in order to contribute to a growing bank of scientific and medical knowledge.

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Embassy of Good Science (Resources | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 5, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Your platform for research integrity and ethics The Embassy offers help to anyone seeking support in handling day-to-day research practices and dilemmas.

The goal of The Embassy of Good Science is to promote research integrity among all those involved in research.... More

Your platform for research integrity and ethics The Embassy offers help to anyone seeking support in handling day-to-day research practices and dilemmas.

The goal of The Embassy of Good Science is to promote research integrity among all those involved in research. The platform is open to anyone willing to learn or support others in fostering understanding and awareness around Good Science. The Embassy aims to become a unique ‘go to’ place, a public square where the community of researchers can gather to discuss ‘hot topics’, share knowledge, and find guidance and support to perform science responsibly and with integrity.

Access the Embassy of Good Science About Short video 

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(US/China) Papers IEEE Forced to Ban Huawei Employees From Peer-Reviewing Papers – PanDaily (Diming Xu | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 21, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Today, IEEE sent an email to its editors, saying “we cannot use colleagues from Huawei as reviewers or Editors for the peer-review process of our journals,” because the US government has put Huawei on its BIS list. Later, the full email was revealed by an IEEE member: More

Today, IEEE sent an email to its editors, saying “we cannot use colleagues from Huawei as reviewers or Editors for the peer-review process of our journals,” because the US government has put Huawei on its BIS list. Later, the full email was revealed by an IEEE member:

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People want to be able to influence the risk – The Ethics Blog (Pär Segerdahl | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 27, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 16, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

We need to do research to know what people think is important in genetic risk information. What they prefer to know. But how do we find out? One way is to ask people to answer questionnaires. One problem with questionnaires is that they ask one thing at a time. Do... More

We need to do research to know what people think is important in genetic risk information. What they prefer to know. But how do we find out? One way is to ask people to answer questionnaires. One problem with questionnaires is that they ask one thing at a time. Do you prefer a hotel room with a sea view when you are on vacation? You probably answer yes. But do you prefer the sea view even if the room is above the disco, or costs 500 EUR per night? If you only ask one thing at a time, then it is difficult to know how different factors interact, how important they are relative to each other. One way to get past this limitation is to ask people to choose between two alternatives, where the alternatives have several different attributes.

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Establishing Rules for Ethicists and Ethics Organizations in Academic Publishing to Avoid Conflicts of Interest, Favoritism, Cronyism and Nepotism (Papers: Dr. János Tóth, et al | May 2019)

Abstract: A proliferation of publication venues, scholarly journals, use of social media to disseminate knowledge and research results, scientific information, increased international scientific collaboration, a move towards open knowledge and data sharing, recent scandals such as journal editors’ coercive citations, fake peer review, peer review rings, data... More

Abstract: A proliferation of publication venues, scholarly journals, use of social media to disseminate knowledge and research results, scientific information, increased international scientific collaboration, a move towards open knowledge and data sharing, recent scandals such as journal editors’ coercive citations, fake peer review, peer review rings, data fabrication, research spin, and retraction of articles, several of the latter within the emergence of a post publication peer review movement, are some of the many reasons why publishing ethics are constantly evolving. These challenges have led to the birth of an increasing number of guidelines and recommendations being issued by multiple organizations and committees around the world in light of the recognized need to salvage peer review, and in an attempt to restore eroding trust in science, scientists and their publications. The principal objective of these guidelines and recommendations is supposedly to provide guidance for editors, reviewers and authors to conduct honest and ethical research and publishing practices, including responsible authorship and editorship, conflict of interest management, maintaining the confidentiality of peer review, and other ethical issues that arise in conducting and reporting research. Despite the fact that scholarly publishing is an international enterprise with global impact, current guidelines and recommendations appear to fall very short on imposing any obligations on their parent members, i.e., committee members who issue guidelines and recommend solutions for ethical dilemmas especially when such organizations are dependent on commercial publishers who may be paying members. Obviously, financial incentives indicate that ethical organizations or ethicists are not in a power position compared to editors or publishers. Imbalanced guidelines risk that hidden conflicts of interest, cronyism, or nepotism may corrupt the decision-making process or the ethical hierarchy that has been put into place to safe-guard research and publishing ethics. Therefore, the ethics gate-keepers to the integrity of scholarly publishing should also be carefully scrutinized, and strict ethical guidelines have to be imposed on them as equally as their rules are imposed on global academia to avoid the risk of further corrupting the scientific process as a result of the absence of strong exterior regulation or oversight. This theoretical paper highlights signs of favoritism and cronyism in ethics. It also offers proposals for rules (limitations and consequences) to avoid them in science publishing. Our guidelines should be used by academics in the position of authors or editors who may sense, perceive or detect abuses of power among ethicists. Keywords: organization ethics; ethical dilemmas; corruption; conflict of interest

Teixeira da Silva, J. A., Katavić, V., Dobránszki, J., Al-Khatib, A. and Bornemann-Cimenti, Hel (2019) Establishing Rules for Ethicists and Ethics Organizations in Academic Publishing to Avoid Conflicts of Interest, Favoritism, Cronyism and Nepotism. KOME: An International Journal of Pure Communication Inquiry. ISSN 2063-7330 Publisher (Open Access): http://komejournal.com/files/KOME_MS_rulesethicists.pdf ResearchGate: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/333311739_Establishing_Rules_for_Ethicists_and_Ethics...

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Can dynamic consent facilitate the protection of biomedical big data in biobanking in Malaysia? (Papers: Mohammad Firdaus Abdul Aziz & Aimi Nadia Mohd Yusof | May 2019)

Abstract As with many other countries, Malaysia is also developing and promoting biomedical research to increase the understanding of human diseases and possible interventions. To facilitate this development, there is a significant growth of biobanks in the country to ensure continuous collection of biological samples for... More

Abstract As with many other countries, Malaysia is also developing and promoting biomedical research to increase the understanding of human diseases and possible interventions. To facilitate this development, there is a significant growth of biobanks in the country to ensure continuous collection of biological samples for future research, which contain extremely important personal information and health data of the participants involved. Given the vast amount of samples and data accumulated by biobanks, they can be considered as reservoirs of precious biomedical big data. It is therefore imperative for biobanks to have in place regulatory measures to ensure ethical use of the biomedical big data. Malaysia has yet to introduce specific legislation for the field of biobanking. However, it can be argued that its existing Personal Data Protection Act 2010 (PDPA) has laid down legal principles that can be enforced to protect biomedical big data generated by the biobanks. Consent is a mechanism to enable data subjects to exercise their autonomy by determining how their data can be used and ensure compliance with legal principles. However, there are two main concerns surrounding the current practice of consent in biomedical big data in Malaysia. First, it is uncertain that the current practice would be able to respect the underlying notion of autonomy, and second, it is not in accordance with the legal principles of the PDPA. Scholars have deliberated on different strategies of informed consent, and a more interactive approach has recently been introduced: dynamic consent. It is argued that a dynamic consent approach would be able to address these concerns. Keywords Biobanking, Autonomy, Data protection, Informed consent, Dynamic consent

Abdul Aziz, Mohammad Firdaus, and Aimi Nadia Mohd Yusof. 2019. Can dynamic consent facilitate the protection of biomedical big data in biobanking in Malaysia? Asian Bioethics Review 11 (2) 1-14.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s41649-019-00086-2. Publisher: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs41649-019-00086-2
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Research Ethics Governance – An African Perspective (Chapter: Marelize I. Schoeman | May 2019)

Abstract Governance structures in research are generally a retrospective response to unethical research practices. Similar to the international research landscape Africa has not been immune to human research abuses inclusive of unethical experimentation and clinical trials. An increase in research was... More

Abstract Governance structures in research are generally a retrospective response to unethical research practices. Similar to the international research landscape Africa has not been immune to human research abuses inclusive of unethical experimentation and clinical trials. An increase in research was noted in Africa this past decade in response to serious psychosocial and health-related challenges the continent faced. This increase in research has not necessarily brought about improvements in the governance and oversight of human research practices. In contrast, it increased the risk of exploitative research funded by resource-rich countries who conducted studies in Africa that would be difficult to conduct in countries with more established and strict research regulatory frameworks.

Even though the impact colonialism and the internationalisation of research had on ethics governance is recognised, African scholars is of the opinion that the debate about research ethics governance largely represents the opinions of scholars from Euro-western countries, with little contribution being made by African scholars. Against this background, the chapter presents an Afrocentric viewpoint of research ethics governance. In addition, Westernised and African research ethics practices and oversight structures were compared to identify challenges and guidelines. The research ethics governance landscape is to a large extent still an uncharted landscape creating the opportunity to develop a research ethics governance framework that acknowledges the unique humanistic morality and normative set of social rules and principles that guide the conduct of people in African societies. The chapter aims to make a significant contribution by stimulate critical discourse about the relevance of ethical principles and governance structures currently used in Africa.

Keywords Research ethics governance, Research ethics committees, Biomedical research, Social science research 

Schoeman M.I. (2019) Research Ethics Governance – An African Perspective. In: Nortjé N., Visagie R., Wessels J. (eds) Social Science Research Ethics in Africa. Research Ethics Forum, vol 7. Springer, Cham Publisher: https://www.springer.com/978-3-030-15401-1?wt_mc=ThirdParty.SpringerLink.3.EPR653.About_eBook
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(Australia) University of Sydney pulls claims elderberries can fight flu – The Age (Liam Mannix | May 2019)

One of the country's leading universities has been forced to retract a claim its study showed eating elderberries could help beat the flu after admitting it was overhyping its own science. The University of Sydney also concealed the research was part-funded by company Pharmacare - which sells elderberry-based flu remedies... More

One of the country's leading universities has been forced to retract a claim its study showed eating elderberries could help beat the flu after admitting it was overhyping its own science. The University of Sydney also concealed the research was part-funded by company Pharmacare - which sells elderberry-based flu remedies - at the company's request. Although it was declared in the study itself, the university also failed to publicise that a Pharmacare employee was involved in the research.

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The social values and politics behind science publishing – University World News (John Richard Schrock | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 18, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 3, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

There are some unique challenges faced by Chinese academics when they attempt to publish in Western journals which I have gleaned from years correcting English in entomology papers. In a recent presentation I outlined the main ones and, in some cases, gave suggestions for how to get around them. Understanding... More

There are some unique challenges faced by Chinese academics when they attempt to publish in Western journals which I have gleaned from years correcting English in entomology papers. In a recent presentation I outlined the main ones and, in some cases, gave suggestions for how to get around them. Understanding the context – the social values and politics – around science and science publishing for Chinese academics is vital. The following case studies illustrate the common problems.

Case 1: A Chinese scientist receives several peer reviews back via the ‘editor’. One reviewer finds the paper submitted acceptable, but a second reviewer notes that there are six very important references missing that must be added. All of these new references are by this second reviewer and are remote from the topic of the paper.

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Friday afternoon’s funny – How safe is your data?

Published/Released on May 17, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 17, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

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Remains of dissected Nazi prisoners to be laid to rest in Berlin – The Guardian (Philip Oltermann | May 2019)

Microscopic tissue samples, kept by controversial anatomist, were found in 2016

The microscopic remains of political prisoners executed by the Nazis and dissected by a controversial anatomist are to be buried in Berlin on Monday, more than seven decades after the end of the... More

Microscopic tissue samples, kept by controversial anatomist, were found in 2016

The microscopic remains of political prisoners executed by the Nazis and dissected by a controversial anatomist are to be buried in Berlin on Monday, more than seven decades after the end of the second world war. About 300 tissue samples, each one no more than a hundredth of a millimetre thin and one square centimetre in size, were discovered in 2016 by descendants of Hermann Stieve, a former director of the Berlin Institute of Anatomy who specialised in research into the female reproductive system. Though Stieve was not a member of the Nazi party, he developed a relationship with the regime whereby he was allowed to do research on recently executed political prisoners in return for helping to obliterate any traces of their remains.

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German ethics council expresses openness to eventual embryo editing – STAT (Sharon Begley | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 13, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 30, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

panel of government-appointed experts in Germany agreed unanimously that the human germline — DNA that is inherited by children from their parents — “is not inviolable,” rejecting one objection to using genome editing technologies such as CRISPR to make heritable changes in the DNA of human embryos,... More

panel of government-appointed experts in Germany agreed unanimously that the human germline — DNA that is inherited by children from their parents — “is not inviolable,” rejecting one objection to using genome editing technologies such as CRISPR to make heritable changes in the DNA of human embryos, sperm, or eggs. [colored_box]In a 47-page report made public on Monday, the independent German Ethics Council concluded that the power of CRISPR, and the announcement last November that a scientist in China had used it to edit two IVF embryos that resulted in the birth of twin girls, means that “the possibility of intervening more easily and precisely in the human germline is drawing closer and closer.” . Although the council’s 26 ethicists, legal scholars, scientists, and other experts agreed unanimously that there are no compelling philosophical arguments against altering human germlines, they also concluded that it is ethically irresponsible to do so now. .

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Junior researchers are losing out by ghostwriting peer reviews – Nature (Virginia Gewin | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 13, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 26, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Graduate students and postdocs who produce reviews under a senior colleague’s name receive no credit or acknowledgement for their work, and miss a chance to become acquainted with journal editors.

A large proportion of graduate students... More

Graduate students and postdocs who produce reviews under a senior colleague’s name receive no credit or acknowledgement for their work, and miss a chance to become acquainted with journal editors.

A large proportion of graduate students and postdocs ghostwrite peer reviews for senior colleagues and supervisors, receiving no professional credit for their work, finds a study1. Co-authors of the article, which was posted on the preprint server bioRxiv on 26 April, surveyed 498 early-career researchers at institutions in the United States (74%), Europe (17%), Asia (4%) and elsewhere to assess how often junior scientists contribute to such reports and how they feel about them. Half of survey respondents said that they had ghostwritten a peer review, but 80% of those said that they felt the practice was unethical, according to the article. The survey took pains to distinguish ghostwriting from co-reviewing, a well-established form of training in which an invited reviewer shares a manuscript with junior researchers to solicit their assessment of the paper’s quality; those researchers can expect to receive some type of credit for their efforts. With ghostwriting, by contrast, a principal investigator (PI) uses part or all of a junior researcher’s review contributions and provides no credit. Roughly 75% of survey respondents said that they had co-reviewed; 95% found it to be a beneficial practice and 73% deemed it ethical.

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Data sharing and how it can benefit your scientific career – Nature (Gabriel Popkin | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 13, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 5, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Open science can lead to greater collaboration, increased confidence in findings and goodwill between researchers.

Ecologist Thomas Crowther knew that scientists had already collected a vast amount of field data on forests worldwide. But almost all of those data were sequestered in researchers’ notebooks... More

Open science can lead to greater collaboration, increased confidence in findings and goodwill between researchers.

Ecologist Thomas Crowther knew that scientists had already collected a vast amount of field data on forests worldwide. But almost all of those data were sequestered in researchers’ notebooks or personal computers, making them unavailable to the wider scientific community. In 2012, Crowther, then a postdoctoral researcher at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, began to e-mail and cold-call researchers to request their data. He started to assemble an inventory, now hosted by the Global Forest Biodiversity Initiative, an international research collaboration, that contains data on more than 1 million locations. Data are stored in CSV files (plain-text files that contain a list of data) on servers at Crowther’s present laboratory at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and on those of a collaborator at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana; he hopes to outsource database storage to a third-party organization with expertise in archiving and access. After years of courting and cajoling, Crowther has persuaded about half of the data owners to make their data public. The other half, he laments, say that they support open data in principle, but have specific reasons for keeping their data sets private. Mainly, he explains, they want to use their data to conduct and publish their own studies. Crowther’s database challenges reflect the current state of science: partly open, partly closed, and with unclear and inconsistent policies and expectations on data sharing that are still in flux. High-level bodies such as the US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and the European Commission have called for science to become more open and endorsed a set of data-management standards known as the FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable) principles. Government funding agencies in the United States, Europe and Australia require researchers to devise plans for data management and, in some cases, data sharing; some private funders also require them. Many journals, including Nature, have adopted policies that encourage or require authors to make data available. A plethora of open-access repositories host data sets from almost all fields, and scientists have been publicly criticized by colleagues for not sharing data.

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Friday afternoon’s funny – Faster recruitment

Published/Released on May 10, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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“Always read the small print”: a case study of commercial research funding, disclosure and agreements with Coca-Cola (Papers: Sarah Steele| May 2019)

Published/Released on May 08, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 27, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Abstract Concerns about conflicts of interest in commercially funded research have generated increasing disclosure requirements, but are these enough to assess influence? Using the Coca-Cola Company as an example, we explore its research agreements to understand influence. Freedom of Information requests identified 87,013 pages of documents,... More

Abstract Concerns about conflicts of interest in commercially funded research have generated increasing disclosure requirements, but are these enough to assess influence? Using the Coca-Cola Company as an example, we explore its research agreements to understand influence. Freedom of Information requests identified 87,013 pages of documents, including five agreements between Coca-Cola and public institutions in the United States, and Canada. We assess whether they allowed Coca-Cola to exercise control or influence. Provisions gave Coca-Cola the right to review research in advance of publication as well as control over (1) study data, (2) disclosure of results and (3) acknowledgement of Coca-Cola funding. Some agreements specified that Coca-Cola has the ultimate decision about any publication of peer-reviewed papers prior to its approval of the researchers’ final report. If so desired, Coca-Cola can thus prevent publication of unfavourable research, but we found no evidence of this to date in the emails we received. The documents also reveal researchers can negotiate with funders successfully to remove restrictive clauses on their research. We recommend journals supplement funding disclosures and conflict-of-interest statements by requiring authors to attach funder agreements. Keywords Coca-Cola Research funding Transparency Industry funding Conflicts of interest

Steele, S., Ruski, G,. McKee, M. & Stuckler, D. (2019). "Always read the small print”: a case study of commercial research funding, disclosure and agreements with Coca-Cola. Journal of Public Health Policy. Publisher (Open Access): https://link.springer.com/article/10.1057%2Fs41271-019-00170-9

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How often do authors with retractions for misconduct continue to publish? – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 08, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

How does retraction change publishing behavior? Mark Bolland and Andrew Grey, who were two members of a team whose work led to dozens of retractions for Yoshihiro Sato, now third on the Retraction... More

How does retraction change publishing behavior? Mark Bolland and Andrew Grey, who were two members of a team whose work led to dozens of retractions for Yoshihiro Sato, now third on the Retraction Watch leaderboard, joined forces with Vyoma Mistry to find out. We asked Bolland to answer several questions about the new University of Auckland team’s paper, which appeared in Accountability in Research. Retraction Watch (RW): You “undertook a survey of publication rates, for authors with multiple retractions in the biomedical literature, to determine whether they changed after authors’ first retractions.” What did you find? Mark Bolland (MB): We wondered whether people continue to publish after they have had more than one of their papers retracted. We identified 100 authors with more than one first-author retraction from the Retraction Watch database (the top 10 from the Retraction watch leaderboard, 40 with at least 10 retractions, and 50 with 2-5 retractions). 82 authors were associated with a retraction in which scientific misconduct was listed as a reason for retraction in the Retraction Watch database.

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Not Reporting Results of a Clinical Trial Is Academic Misconduct – ACP (Editorial | Joshua D. Wallach, MS, PhD; Harlan M. Krumholz, MD, SM | May 2019)

Failure to report the results of clinical trials threatens the public's trust in research and the integrity of the medical literature, and should be considered academic misconduct at the individual and institutional levels. According to the ethical principles for research outlined in the Declaration of Helsinki, researchers “have a... More

Failure to report the results of clinical trials threatens the public's trust in research and the integrity of the medical literature, and should be considered academic misconduct at the individual and institutional levels. According to the ethical principles for research outlined in the Declaration of Helsinki, researchers “have a duty to make publicly available the results of their research on human subjects and are accountable for the completeness and accuracy of their reports” (1). When participants volunteer to take part in clinical trials, and expose themselves to interventions with unknown safety and efficacy profiles, they have a tacit assumption, based on trust, that the evidence generated will inform clinical science (2). Health care providers and medical societies, who are responsible for evaluating and synthesizing evidence and filling the gap between research and practice, need for investigators to fully report their results in a timely manner. The utility of the diligent search for truth in the medical literature depends on its completeness. However, when research findings are not consistently disseminated, the literature provides a skewed view of the science, which may bias reviews of the evidence. During the past 2 decades, efforts have been increasing to promote the reporting of clinical trial results. After the creation of ClinicalTrials.gov, a public registration database, the United States moved to establish consequences of not reporting clinical trial results. In particular, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act (FDAAA) of 2007 created legal requirements for certain intervention studies of FDA-regulated...

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Study pulls back curtain on contracts between Coca-Cola and the researchers it funds – STAT (Andrew Josep | May 2019)

When it funds scientific research, Coca-Cola includes a provision in its contracts with academic institutions that allows the beverage giant to pull its funding for a study at any point, according to a group of researchers who obtained several such agreements. The policies could pressure recipients of the... More

When it funds scientific research, Coca-Cola includes a provision in its contracts with academic institutions that allows the beverage giant to pull its funding for a study at any point, according to a group of researchers who obtained several such agreements. The policies could pressure recipients of the funding to pursue research that dovetails with Coca-Cola’s goals out of fear of having their project canceled, the researchers said in a paper published Tuesday, though they added that they found no example of that occurring. The paper, which was published in the Journal of Public Health Policy, comes amid increasing scrutiny of the food and beverage industry’s funding of and influence over academic research. The industry has taken a number of steps to improve transparency and safeguard the independence of studies it sponsors. Notably, Coca-Cola in 2015 started listing on its website the institutions and researchers it funded and the following year outlined principles that would guide its support for scientific research.

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Fake news about the past is a crime against history – University World News (Antoon De Baets | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 29, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

Historians observing the current debate on fake news are tempted to make comments from a long-term perspective. First, fake news, as a type of lie that constitutes disinformation, has an ancient pedigree. Indeed, among the plethora of primary sources used by historians to study the... More

Historians observing the current debate on fake news are tempted to make comments from a long-term perspective. First, fake news, as a type of lie that constitutes disinformation, has an ancient pedigree. Indeed, among the plethora of primary sources used by historians to study the past, some are forged, many distorted and all are biased. To filter truth from such sources, historians have developed a severe method of source criticism over the ages, first in East Asia and Europe. Although an old phenomenon, fake news in its recent guises also has some strikingly new features because it spreads on the internet nowadays, mainly via social media platforms.

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(Japan) Science retracts report on deadly Kumamoto earthquake – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 02, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 6, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

Science is retracting a 2017 paper about the deadly Kumamoto earthquake about a month after the university announced that the paper’s first author, Aiming Lin, had committed misconduct, including falsification of data and plagiarism. Science editor in chief Jeremy Berg More

Science is retracting a 2017 paper about the deadly Kumamoto earthquake about a month after the university announced that the paper’s first author, Aiming Lin, had committed misconduct, including falsification of data and plagiarism. Science editor in chief Jeremy Berg told us in late March that the journal had been trying to obtain more information in preparation for writing an expression of concern. Here’s today’s retraction notice:

The November 2018 Science Report, “Coseismic rupturing stopped by Aso volcano during the 2016 Mw 7.1 Kumamoto earthquake, Japan” presented evidence that the 2016 Mw 7.1 Kumamoto earthquake produced a surface rupture zone of ~40 km long along the pre-existing active fault zone and identified for the first time faults on the western side of Aso caldera, Kyushu Island, Japan. In August 2017, a confidential investigation into potential irregularities in the paper was initiated at Kyoto University. The investigation was completed in March 2019 and has confirmed that the paper contained falsified data and manipulated images. Specifically, there were multiple falsifications in Figs 1B, 1C, 2A, and 2C, and instances of plagiarism in Fig. 1C. These were the responsibility of the corresponding author, Aiming Lin. In agreement with the recommendation of the investigation, the authors are retracting the Report.

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“We got scammed:” Authors “sincerely apologize” for plagiarism they blame a ghostwriter for – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 02, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 13, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

The journal Cureus is retracting three articles by a mashup of authors from Pakistan and the United States for plagiarism, which the researchers blame on their use of a hired gun to prepare the papers. [colored_box]The articles were published over a roughly one-month stretch in August and September 2018 and... More

The journal Cureus is retracting three articles by a mashup of authors from Pakistan and the United States for plagiarism, which the researchers blame on their use of a hired gun to prepare the papers. [colored_box]The articles were published over a roughly one-month stretch in August and September 2018 and covered an impressively polymathic range of topics, from lupus to heart disease. Although the list of authors varied, a few names remained constant. One, Asad Ali, of Lahore Medical College and Institute of Dentistry, was the first author on all three papers. Another was Malik Qistas Ahmad, whose affiliation is given as the University of Arizona Cancer Center in Tucson although he no longer works there. . The papers (not in chronological order) are: “Systemic lupus erythematosus: an overview of the disease pathology and its management”;  “Neurogenic stunned myocardium: a literature review”; and “An overview of the pathology and emerging treatment approaches for interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome.” .

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Cabell’s Predatory Journal Blacklist: An Updated Review – Scholarly Kitchen (Rick Anderson | May 2019)

Published/Released on May 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 15, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

A couple of years ago, I published in The Kitchen a review of what was then a new product: Cabell’s Blacklist, a directory of journals that are published using questionable, suspicious, or objectively deceitful and dishonest strategies. The Blacklist was designed... More

A couple of years ago, I published in The Kitchen a review of what was then a new product: Cabell’s Blacklist, a directory of journals that are published using questionable, suspicious, or objectively deceitful and dishonest strategies. The Blacklist was designed to take the place of the controversial Beall’s List, which had recently shut down after being operated out of the library office of Jeffrey Beall for about five years. Beall’s List had offered a mixed bag of benefits and problems from the start, and Cabell’s (publisher of a long-respected serials directory) sought to create a more rigorous and consistent version of the same service. [colored_box]A very quick summary for those who may — against all odds — still be blissfully unaware of what terms like “predatory publishing or “deceptive publishing” refer to: what are commonly called predatory publishers are those who lie about their business practices for the purpose of attracting paying authors. These journals misrepresent themselves with regard to, for example, editorial board members (claiming people as editors without permission), peer review practices (falsely claiming to provide meaningful peer review), impact metrics (mostly by lying about their Journal Impact Factor), organizational affiliations (usually claiming a relationship with a nonexistent organization), etc. The common feature of all such journals is that instead of rigorously evaluating and vetting submitted articles, they will instead publish anything submitted as long as the author is willing to pay an article processing charge (APC). By injecting non-vetted content into the scholarly and scientific marketplace and misrepresenting it as peer-reviewed science, these journals contaminate and undermine both the legitimacy and the trustworthiness of scholarly discourse. . Thus, the introduction of Cabell’s Blacklist in 2017 was a welcome development. It promised a tool that can be used by authors needing help deciding where to publish, by academics and other employers seeking to check the legitimacy of job applicants’ claimed applications or editorial board memberships, or anyone else interested in monitoring the behavior of deceptive publishers. And for those who question the necessity of such a tool, it’s worth noting that Cabell’s Blacklist currently includes almost 12,000 journals — and its list of titles under consideration for inclusion in the Blacklist comes to over 1,000 more. .

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Trump’s science adviser on research ethics, immigration and presidential tweets – Science (Sara Reardon | April 2019)

Five months into the job, Kelvin Droegemeier tells Nature what it’s like to work with the US president.

When meteorologist Kelvin Droegemeier was sworn in as director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) in February, he inherited More

Five months into the job, Kelvin Droegemeier tells Nature what it’s like to work with the US president.

When meteorologist Kelvin Droegemeier was sworn in as director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) in February, he inherited an office that had been without a leader for two years — and became the top science adviser to President Donald Trump. Trump's push to cut government spending on research, and his policies on issues such as immigration, have caused controversy in science. Nature spoke to Droegemeier in mid-April — two months into his tenure — about these policies, his plans and what it’s like to work with the president. The interview has been edited for length and clarity. The number of OSTP staff dropped precipitously during Trump’s first two years in office. What is the situation now? The lights were definitely on, and there was a lot of work actually getting done. We have people cycle through. Some of them are on detail for a year, so there’s kind of a constant refresh. I have brought additional people on board in some of the areas that I’m going to be working on a little bit more.

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European universities dismal at reporting results of clinical trials – Nature (Nic Fleming | April 2019)

Analysis of 30 leading institutions found that just 17% of study results had been posted online as required by EU rules.

[colored_box]Many of Europe’s major research universities are ignoring rules that require them to make... More

Analysis of 30 leading institutions found that just 17% of study results had been posted online as required by EU rules.

[colored_box]Many of Europe’s major research universities are ignoring rules that require them to make public the results of clinical trials. A report published on 30 April found that the results of only 162 of 940 clinical trials (17%) that were due to be published by 1 April had been posted on the European Union’s trials register. The 30 universities surveyed are those that sponsor the most clinical trials in the EU. Fourteen of these institutions had failed to publish a single results summary. If three high-performing UK universities are excluded from the figures, the results of just 7% of the trials were made public on time. Campaigners say the resulting lack of transparency harms patients by undermining the efforts of doctors and health authorities to provide the best treatments, slows medical progress and wastes public funds.

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Australian Mental Health Consumer and Carer Perspectives on Ethics in Adult Mental Health Research (Papers: Alyssa R. Morse, et al | April 2019)

Abstract Barriers to research arise when national ethical guidelines governing the inclusion of consumers in mental health research are implemented at the local level. Equivalent guidelines for research involving carers are not available. A social science investigation of Australian mental health consumer and carer perspectives... More

Abstract Barriers to research arise when national ethical guidelines governing the inclusion of consumers in mental health research are implemented at the local level. Equivalent guidelines for research involving carers are not available. A social science investigation of Australian mental health consumer and carer perspectives on research ethics procedures was conducted in two interlinked stages: (a) a discussion forum with consumers, carers, and lived-experience researchers and (b) in-depth interviews with consumers and carers. Data collection and analysis drew strongly on methodological features of grounded theory. Privacy, confidentiality, and stigmatizing ethics procedures were key issues for consumer and carer participants. Recommendations for research practice include the following: considering the impact of information sharing on participants' relationships and adopting individual-focused approaches to managing research risks.
Keywords: caregiver; carer involvement; consumer involvement; mental health; research ethics; service user

Morse, A. R., Forbes, O., Jones, B. A., Gulliver, A., & Banfield, M. (2019). Australian Mental Health Consumer and Carer Perspectives on Ethics in Adult Mental Health Research. Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics. https://doi.org/10.1177/1556264619844396 Publisher: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1556264619844396

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Ask The Chefs: AI and Scholarly Communications – Scholarly Kitchen (Ann Michael | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 25, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 19, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

No one will dispute that AI (Artificial Intelligence) needs to “eat” data, preferably in massive quantities, to develop. The better the data quality, the better the result. When thinking about the potential applications of AI in scholarly communications as related to research artifacts, how will that work? How might... More

No one will dispute that AI (Artificial Intelligence) needs to “eat” data, preferably in massive quantities, to develop. The better the data quality, the better the result. When thinking about the potential applications of AI in scholarly communications as related to research artifacts, how will that work? How might AI be trained on high quality, vetted information? How are the benefits and costs distributed? [colored_box]This month we asked the Chefs: Where does scholarly communication and academic outputs fit in to the world of AI development? . Judy Luther: In scholarly communications there is an expanding body of openly available content from preprint servers, such as arXiv and bioRxiv, and Open Access journals and books. In addition, there is a growing variety of formats that include datasets and code, open peer review, media, and other elements of the scholarly research cycle. This volume of content provides a rich resource to be mined for all stakeholders as well as a broader audience. .

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Rein in the four horsemen of irreproducibility – Nature ( Dorothy Bishop | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 24, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 1, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

Dorothy Bishop describes how threats to reproducibility, recognized but unaddressed for decades, might finally be brought under control.

More than four decades into my scientific career, I find myself an outlier among academics of similar age and seniority: I strongly identify with the movement... More

Dorothy Bishop describes how threats to reproducibility, recognized but unaddressed for decades, might finally be brought under control.

More than four decades into my scientific career, I find myself an outlier among academics of similar age and seniority: I strongly identify with the movement to make the practice of science more robust. It’s not that my contemporaries are unconcerned about doing science well; it’s just that many of them don’t seem to recognize that there are serious problems with current practices. By contrast, I think that, in two decades, we will look back on the past 60 years — particularly in biomedical science — and marvel at how much time and money has been wasted on flawed research. How can that be? We know how to formulate and test hypotheses in controlled experiments. We can account for unwanted variation with statistical techniques. We appreciate the need to replicate observations. Yet many researchers persist in working in a way almost guaranteed not to deliver meaningful results. They ride with what I refer to as the four horsemen of the reproducibility apocalypse: publication bias, low statistical power, P-value hacking and HARKing (hypothesizing after results are known). My generation and the one before us have done little to rein these in.

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‘They’re not property’: the people who want their ancestors back from British museums – The Guardian (David Shariatmadari | Apr 2019)

Published/Released on April 23, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 25, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

The remains of indigenous people from all over the world have ended up in various British institutions. Why do their descendants have so much trouble getting them returned?

In November 2011, Ned David travelled the 8,500 miles from his home on Thursday... More

The remains of indigenous people from all over the world have ended up in various British institutions. Why do their descendants have so much trouble getting them returned?

In November 2011, Ned David travelled the 8,500 miles from his home on Thursday Island, off the tip of Queensland, Australia, to the Natural History Museum in London. He was on a mission to collect the bones of his ancestors. The material included skulls, a jawbone and other fragments from the Torres Strait archipelago, collected by Europeans in the 19th century as scientific specimens and anthropological curios. The museum had agreed that the remains should be given back to their “originating community”, and it was finally time to take them home. A private ceremony was held – David is reluctant to share the details with outsiders – and afterwards he and his fellow islanders went back to their hotel. But the mood wasn’t celebratory. “Mate,” he says, “it was sombre with a capital ‘S’. There was sort of this eerie feeling after all the hoo-ha and the media, and whatever. We sat around and no one spoke. I think it took a long time to realise the significance of what we had done.” The handover had followed a consultation in which islanders were asked what they wanted to do about body parts that were sitting in collections on the other side of the world. Feelings ran high. “It’s probably one of those rare exercises we have done as a nation in which we were in total agreement with each other,” says David, who chairs the Gur A Baradharaw Kod, or Torres Strait Sea and Land council. “As one elder said: ‘How would you feel knowing that one of your family members is in some strange place and, more importantly, hasn’t been afforded the right burial?’ That has an impact on the psyche of a group.”

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Prominent UCSD eye doctor ‘on leave’ after inewsource investigation – inewsource (Jill Castellano & Brad Racino | April 2019)

Dr. Kang Zhang, chief of eye genetics at the University of California San Diego, is “on leave” after an inewsource investigation exposed how the doctor put medical research subjects in harm’s way for years while pulling in millions of federal dollars for the institution. [colored_box]In a... More

Dr. Kang Zhang, chief of eye genetics at the University of California San Diego, is “on leave” after an inewsource investigation exposed how the doctor put medical research subjects in harm’s way for years while pulling in millions of federal dollars for the institution. [colored_box]In a new development, inewsource obtained an inspection report from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that detailed more problems with one of Zhang’s studies. The report, compiled in 2016, described one incident in which Zhang poked a hole in a study participant’s eye with a needle, causing a cataract that had to be fixed with surgery. . The person wasn’t supposed to be enrolled in the study, according to the report, and the injury allegedly occurred because Zhang was in a hurry to take a trip to China. .

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African governments need to fund research ethics training – University World News (Paul Ndebele | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 20, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 24, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

There has been significant growth in international collaborative research implemented in Sub-Saharan Africa over the past three decades – funded mainly by the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Japan and other nations. This growth has in part led to debates about the ethics of some of the research. For example,... More

There has been significant growth in international collaborative research implemented in Sub-Saharan Africa over the past three decades – funded mainly by the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Japan and other nations. This growth has in part led to debates about the ethics of some of the research. For example, during the late 1990s there were serious debates regarding use of placebos in research on HIV treatment when treatment outcomes were already known. Some commentators accused researchers from rich countries of using poor African countries to conduct research which they could not conduct in their own countries due to the stringent protections already in place. Additionally, several papers described the weak research oversight systems in several African countries. In response, several research ethics capacity development programmes were initiated across Sub-Saharan Africa with the support of the World Health Organization, US National Institutes of Health, Wellcome Trust, Erasmus Mundus programme, pharmaceutical companies and others.

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(US) Major U.S. cancer center ousts ‘Asian’ researchers after NIH flags their foreign ties – Science (Mara Hvistendahl | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 19, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 11, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

HOUSTON, TEXAS—The MD Anderson Cancer Center here has ousted three senior researchers after the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, informed it that the scientists had committed potentially “serious” violations of agency rules involving confidentiality of peer review and the disclosure of foreign ties. The researchers are... More

HOUSTON, TEXAS—The MD Anderson Cancer Center here has ousted three senior researchers after the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, informed it that the scientists had committed potentially “serious” violations of agency rules involving confidentiality of peer review and the disclosure of foreign ties. The researchers are among five MD Anderson scientists that NIH cited in letters to the cancer center, which is part of the University of Texas (UT) system. MD Anderson officials say they invoked termination proceedings against three of the researchers, are still investigating allegations against one, and determined termination was not warranted for the fifth scientist. The new developments are linked to a sweeping effort launched last year by NIH to address growing U.S. government fears that foreign nations, particularly China, are taking unfair advantage of federally funded research. NIH says its inquiries about the foreign ties of specific NIH-funded researchers have prompted at least 55 institutions to launch investigations. The cases at MD Anderson, which received $148 million in NIH funding in 2018, are the first publicly known instances where NIH’s inquiries appear to have led an institution to invoke termination proceedings against researchers judged to have violated the rules. Cancer center officials have not named any of the five researchers. MD Anderson President Peter Pisters says all are “Asian”; Science has confirmed that three are ethnically Chinese. Several faced NIH inquiries about their ties to China, according to internal cancer center documents and NIH emails provided by MD Anderson to the Houston Chronicle and reviewed by Science. Those documents also show that MD Anderson has been working with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for several years on undisclosed national security investigations, which included searches of faculty email accounts and in one instance, video surveillance. Those investigations could be linked to the recent departures and to the NIH letters; MD Anderson had put at least one faculty member named by NIH on leave in December 2017, months before NIH sent its letter and 1 week after FBI gained access to several MD Anderson network accounts.

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Censorship in a China Studies Journal – Inside Higher Ed (Elizabeth Redden | April 2019)

Scholars say they thought a journal was run on Western standards of free expression, but they found Chinese government control instead.

Yet another account of censorship involving a China studies journal has come to light. And the scholars involved say this case involves an... More

Scholars say they thought a journal was run on Western standards of free expression, but they found Chinese government control instead.

Yet another account of censorship involving a China studies journal has come to light. And the scholars involved say this case involves an insidious “blurring of boundaries” where they were misled into thinking Western publishing standards would apply when in fact the journal in question was subject to Chinese government censorship. Lorraine Wong and Jacob Edmond, both professors at the University of Otago, in New Zealand, have written an account of the censorship they encountered when they edited a planned special issue of the journal Frontiers of Literary Studies in China. The journal is published by the Netherlands-based publishing company Brill in association with the China-based Higher Education Press, an entity that describes itself on its website (in Chinese) as affiliated with China’s Ministry of Education. The journal's editorial board lists scholars from major American and international universities -- including Cornell University, Duke University, Harvard University, the University of California, Davis, and the University of Washington -- and its editor in chief is based at New York University. The journal’s editorial office is located in Beijing. Wong and Edmond wrote that the association with Brill, along with the involvement of leading scholars in the field on the editorial board, led them to mistakenly assume the publication standards would be akin to those of other journals in the field published in the U.S. What they found, however, was that the affiliation with the Higher Education Press and the location of the editorial office in Beijing means “the journal is subject to the full range of Chinese government censorship.”

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(US) Safeguards for human studies can’t cope with big data – Nature (Nathaniel Raymond | April 2019)

Forty years on from a foundational report on how to protect people participating in research, cracks are showing, warns Nathaniel Raymond.

One of the primary documents aiming to protect human research participants was published in the US Federal Register 40 years ago this week.... More

Forty years on from a foundational report on how to protect people participating in research, cracks are showing, warns Nathaniel Raymond.

One of the primary documents aiming to protect human research participants was published in the US Federal Register 40 years ago this week. The Belmont Report was commissioned by Congress in the wake of the notorious Tuskegee syphilis study, in which researchers withheld treatment from African American men for years and observed how the disease caused blindness, heart disease, dementia and, in some cases, death. [colored_box]The Belmont Report lays out core principles now generally required for human research to be considered ethical. Although technically governing only US federally supported research, its influence reverberates across academia and industry globally. Before academics with US government funding can begin research involving humans, their institutional review boards (IRBs) must determine that the studies comply with regulation largely derived from a document that was written more than a decade before the World Wide Web and nearly a quarter of a century before Facebook. . It is past time for a Belmont 2.0. We should not be asking those tasked with protecting human participants to single-handedly identify and contend with the implications of the digital revolution. Technological progress, including machine learning, data analytics and artificial intelligence, has altered the potential risks of research in ways that the authors of the first Belmont report could not have predicted. For example, Muslim cab drivers can be identified from patterns indicating that they stop to pray; the Ugandan government can try to identify gay men from their social-media habits; and researchers can monitor and influence individuals’ behaviour online without enrolling them in a study. .

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The Pernicious Effects of Compression Plagiarism on Scholarly Argumentation (Papers: M. V. Dougherty | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 12, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 26, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Abstract Despite an increased recognition that plagiarism in published research can take many forms, current typologies of plagiarism are far from complete. One under-recognized variety of plagiarism—designated here as compression plagiarism—consists of the distillation of a lengthy scholarly text... More

Abstract Despite an increased recognition that plagiarism in published research can take many forms, current typologies of plagiarism are far from complete. One under-recognized variety of plagiarism—designated here as compression plagiarism—consists of the distillation of a lengthy scholarly text into a short one, followed by the publication of the short one under a new name with inadequate credit to the original author. In typical cases, compression plagiarism is invisible to unsuspecting readers and immune to anti-plagiarism software. The persistence of uncorrected instances of plagiarism in all its forms—including compression plagiarism—in the body of published research literature has deleterious consequences for the reliability of scholarly communication. Not the least of these problems is that original authors are denied credit for their discoveries. When unsuspecting researchers read articles that are the products of plagiarism, they unwittingly engage the arguments of hidden original authors through the proxy of plagiarists. Furthermore, when these researchers later publish responses to the plagiarizing articles, not knowing they are engaging products of plagiarism, they create additional inefficiencies and redundancies in the body of published research. This article analyzes a suspected instance of compression plagiarism that appeared within the pages of this journal and considers the particular ways in which plagiarism of this variety weakens the quality of scholarly argumentation, with special attention paid to the field of philosophy.

Keywords Compression plagiarism Authorship Research misconduct Retractions Argumentation Scholarly communication 

Dougherty, M.V. (2019) The Pernicious Effects of Compression Plagiarism on Scholarly Argumentation. Argumentation. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10503-019-09481-3 Publisher: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10503-019-09481-3

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“Predatory” company uses Canadian universities to sell shoddy conferences – Ottawa Citizen (Tom Spears | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 10, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 14, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Omics International is still marketing junky science conferences in Montreal and Toronto this month despite a U.S. judge’s order to stop “deceptive” promoting of its conferences and academic journals. [colored_box]The company has a long record of publishing any research papers for a fee. This allows underqualified academics to pad their... More

Omics International is still marketing junky science conferences in Montreal and Toronto this month despite a U.S. judge’s order to stop “deceptive” promoting of its conferences and academic journals. [colored_box]The company has a long record of publishing any research papers for a fee. This allows underqualified academics to pad their credentials with fake research papers and gain promotion. Companies that do this are known as “predatory” publishers. . But a US District Court judge fined Omics more than $50 million on March 29 and made a sweeping order prohibiting the India-based company from “misrepresenting” its conferences and journals. . So far, the company is showing no signs of change. It is running a series of 18 small but pricey conferences in Toronto and Montreal in the next few weeks on topics ranging from cosmetology to medicine. Registration fees range up to US$1,399 for two days. .

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Pragmatic trials without informed consent? – The Ethics Blog (Pär Segerdahl | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 08, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 9, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are considered to be the gold standard for determining a causal effect of medical interventions. To achieve this aim, possible confounding factors must be avoided. This implies excluding many patients from participating in the trial, for example, patients with concomitant conditions. A negative consequence of... More

Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are considered to be the gold standard for determining a causal effect of medical interventions. To achieve this aim, possible confounding factors must be avoided. This implies excluding many patients from participating in the trial, for example, patients with concomitant conditions. A negative consequence of these exclusions, however, is limited generalizability. Studying the artificially uniform participant group, you will be able to determine a causal effect, but you will know much less about real-life treatment outcomes in the population where the intervention actually will be used. [colored_box]Further artificiality is created by the written informed consent procedure, which excludes even further patients from participating in the trial. Moreover, because they know they participate in a clinical trial, participants may change their behavior. All this points to the importance of so-called pragmatic randomized controlled trials. In such trials, the effectiveness of two approved and routinely prescribed medicines are compared in normal clinical practice. This avoids most of the artificiality of RCTs and significantly improves generalizability and practical clinical relevance. Randomization is still required for scientific purposes, however, and written informed consent is an ethical obligation.

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(Japan) Former university president up to ten retractions – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | April 2019)

The former president of Tohoku University in Japan has just had a tenth paper retracted, because it duplicated one of his earlier works. One of the most recent retractions by materials scientist Akihisa Inoue, late last month, was of a paper in Materials Transactions... More

The former president of Tohoku University in Japan has just had a tenth paper retracted, because it duplicated one of his earlier works. One of the most recent retractions by materials scientist Akihisa Inoue, late last month, was of a paper in Materials Transactions that had duplicated a now-retracted paper and was subject to an expression of concern in 2012:

This article had been acknowledged by the Editorial Committee of Materials Transactions as the secondary publication from the previously published paper, because the contents were almost identical. Recently, the original paper was retracted. Unreferred reproduction from another paper which was not pointed out in the announcement has also been found. Therefore, this article is improper as a scientific paper, and it is retracted with the primary author’s agreement. The authors are required to pay more careful attention to contributing papers.

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Fining one ‘predatory’ publisher won’t fix the problem of bad science in journals – STAT (Adam Marcus | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 05, 2019 | Posted by Admin on October 21, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Science publishers aren’t supposed to be in the disinformation business. And that’s precisely what a federal judge in Nevada was saying late last month when she slapped OMICS International with a $50 million penalty in a suit brought by the U.S. Federal Trade... More

Science publishers aren’t supposed to be in the disinformation business. And that’s precisely what a federal judge in Nevada was saying late last month when she slapped OMICS International with a $50 million penalty in a suit brought by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. Judge Gloria M. Navarro agreed with regulators that OMICS, which publishes hundreds of journals and puts on scientific conferences, was guilty of “numerous express and material misrepresentations regarding their journal publishing practices.” The ruling clearly is a win for honest brokers in scientific publishing. But it’s not the solution to the problem of so-called predatory journals — a term used to describe for-profit publications that pretend to offer peer review and editing but in reality do little, if any, of either.

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‘Search for inspiration’ lands too close to plagiarism, forcing retraction of grief paper – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 30, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

A pair of grief scholars in Denmark have lost a 2018 paper on ghostly apparitions after one of the researchers copied text from another article. [colored_box]The study, “How many bereaved people hallucinate about their loved one? A systematic review and meta-analysis of bereavement hallucinations,” appeared in the Journal of Affective... More

A pair of grief scholars in Denmark have lost a 2018 paper on ghostly apparitions after one of the researchers copied text from another article. [colored_box]The study, “How many bereaved people hallucinate about their loved one? A systematic review and meta-analysis of bereavement hallucinations,” appeared in the Journal of Affective Disorders, an Elsevier publication. Authors Karina Stengaard Kamp and Helena Due — yes, a second author named Due — are with The Aarhus Bereavement Research Unit at Aarhus University. . As the retraction notice explains: . This article has been retracted at the request of the authors. . After publication it came to their attention that parts of the wording especially in the last part of the discussion section (i.e., Methodological challenges and recommendation for future research, Strengths and limitations, and Conclusion) are too close to the cited manuscript (Lundorff et al., 2017). This mistake has sprung from the first author’s inexperience, and... .

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U.S. judge rules deceptive publisher should pay $50 million in damages – Science (Jeffrey Brainard | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

A U.S. federal judge has ordered the OMICS International publishing group to pay $50.1 million in damages for deceiving thousands of authors who published in its journals and attended its conferences. It’s one of the first rulings of its kind against one of the largest publishers accused of so-called... More

A U.S. federal judge has ordered the OMICS International publishing group to pay $50.1 million in damages for deceiving thousands of authors who published in its journals and attended its conferences. It’s one of the first rulings of its kind against one of the largest publishers accused of so-called predatory tactics. But because it’s a U.S. judgment and OMICS is based in Hyderabad, India, it’s not clear that any money will be collected or shared with researchers who claim OMICS deceived them. Judge Gloria Navarro of the U.S. District Court in Las Vegas, Nevada, granted summary judgment without a trial, accepting as uncontroverted a set of allegations made in 2016 by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in Washington, D.C., in its capacity as a consumer watchdog. The ruling also bars OMICS from similar future conduct.

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Transparent Attribution of Contributions to Research: Aligning Guidelines to Real-Life Practices (Papers: Valerie Matarese and Karen Shashok | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 28, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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Duke University’s huge misconduct fine is a reminder to reward rigour – Nature (Arturo Casadevall | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 02, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 15, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

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Copyright the Card Game – Australian Edition (a game produced by Creative Commons Australia and the Australian Libraries Copyright Committee, in partnership with the Australian Digital Alliance | April 2019)

Published/Released on April 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on September 28, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Copyright The Card Game – Australian Edition is an adaptation of Copyright The Card Game v3.0 by Chris Morrison and Jane Secker. This Edition and the original game are licensed for reuse under the terms of a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International licence, http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0. This Edition... More

Copyright The Card Game – Australian Edition is an adaptation of Copyright The Card Game v3.0 by Chris Morrison and Jane Secker. This Edition and the original game are licensed for reuse under the terms of a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International licence, http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0. This Edition was adapted for Australia and Australian copyright law by Nerida Quatermass, Kate Makowiecka, Lisa Conti Phillipps, Elliott Bledsoe and Jessica Coates. It is proudly produced by Creative Commons Australia and the Australian Libraries Copyright Committee, in partnership with the Australian Digital Alliance. Resources You can download the cards as a PDF with or without bleeds:

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Director of Hong Kong science institute ASTRI charged with misconduct for not disclosing shares in vendor companies – South China Morning Post (Danny Lee | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 20, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

Research head at government-run ASTRI accused of holding shares in companies he approved HK$535,000 worth of purchases from

The research director of a government science institute has been charged with misconduct for failing to disclose his financial interests in two companies before endorsing over... More

Research head at government-run ASTRI accused of holding shares in companies he approved HK$535,000 worth of purchases from

The research director of a government science institute has been charged with misconduct for failing to disclose his financial interests in two companies before endorsing over half a million dollars worth of purchases. The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) found that Lau Man-kin, the research and development director of the Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI), did not reveal that he and his wife had investments in the two vendors before he approved buying HK$535,000 (US$68,155) worth of computers and software. The ICAC said in a statement on Friday that the case arose from a corruption complaint referred by ASTRI, which provided cooperation during the investigation.

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The Ethics of Learning Analytics in Australian Higher Education. A Discussion Paper (The University of Melbourne | March 2019)

Overview This project brought together learning analytics experts from across Australia to explore key ethical issues relating to the development and use of learning analytics in higher education. The result of these discussions was a discussion paper that provides an outline of seven ethical principles as... More

Overview This project brought together learning analytics experts from across Australia to explore key ethical issues relating to the development and use of learning analytics in higher education. The result of these discussions was a discussion paper that provides an outline of seven ethical principles as well as practical considerations associated with the use of learning analytics.

Objective

The ever-increasing availability of data about student activities in educational environments presents many opportunities for the improvement of learning and teaching through the use of learning analytics. In applying analytics, there is an obligation that educators and institutions ensure that data and analysis techniques are used appropriately. The range of ethical considerations that educational institutions must face is complex, and many institutions are still formulating their approach to ensuring ethical practice in this field. The objective of this project was to draw together contemporary research and current practice in the area of ethics and learning analytics, and use this to produce a discussion paper that provides guidance to a range of higher education stakeholders including students, educators, researchers, and senior leaders.

Corrin, L., Kennedy, G., French, S., Buckingham Shum S., Kitto, K., Pardo, A., West, D., Mirriahi, N., & Colvin, C. (2019). The Ethics of Learning Analytics in Australian Higher Education. A Discussion Paper. https://melbourne-cshe.unimelb.edu.au/research/research-projects/edutech/the-ethical-use-of-learning-analytics

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(US/UK) Data suggest US, UK universities fall woefully short on reporting clinical trial results – Endpoints News (Natalie Grover | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 9, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Clinical trial data are used by patients, doctors and policymakers to make informed choices about the benefits and safety of interventions — while the methods and results of all trials are crucial to the pace and direction of scientific progress. However, there is a large body of evidence that... More

Clinical trial data are used by patients, doctors and policymakers to make informed choices about the benefits and safety of interventions — while the methods and results of all trials are crucial to the pace and direction of scientific progress. However, there is a large body of evidence that suggests that completed clinical trials are commonly left unreported, and educational institutions in the United States and the United Kingdom — arguably the two biggest regions that breed the bulk of medical innovation — have emerged as one of the key culprits guilty of these violations. In the United States, Congress passed a law in 2007 requiring trial sponsors — including universities — to post the results of certain clinical trials on clinicaltrials.gov within a year of trial completion, and a decade later in January 2017 the rule was finalized. Since 2017, 40 leading US universities should have posted the results of 450 clinical trials — but over a third (31%) of those results are missing, according to an analysis by Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM) in partnership with non-profit research advocacy group TranspariMED. The violators include some of the most active trial sponsors: For example the MD Anderson Cancer Center, which has only reported 77% of due trials, Mayo Clinic (42%), UC San Francisco (37%), New York University (21%), and Columbia University (17%).

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Technological Support for Peer Review Innovations – Scholarly Kitchen (Jessica Polka | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on August 24, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

The design of critical infrastructure determines what its users can do, and when. For example, the New York City subway system carries 1.7 billion passengers annually, shapes centers of residential and commercial activity, and enables a vibrant culture with its late night service. Incredibly, it does... More

The design of critical infrastructure determines what its users can do, and when. For example, the New York City subway system carries 1.7 billion passengers annually, shapes centers of residential and commercial activity, and enables a vibrant culture with its late night service. Incredibly, it does this with a signaling system that predates World War II that forces trains to be spaced far apart from one another, limiting capacity and causing delays. Upgrading the signaling system is necessary to meet current demands, but it is estimated to cost tens of billions of dollars and would require closing stations on nights and weekends, harming New Yorkers who depend on these services. Thus, the radical (but ultimately necessary) upgrade has been delayed in favor of putting out more urgent fires, for example track damage caused by hurricane Sandy. Similarly, journal management systems and publishing platforms act as essential infrastructure for scholarly communication. While more nimble than a metropolitan transport network, they nevertheless face challenges in balancing needs for both urgent fixes and aspirational developments. Over the long term, their supported features can shape the nature of scholarly communication, restricting or inspiring innovation. Peer review innovation Interest is mounting in modernizing peer review. In just the last year, a variety of new platforms and initiatives have launched: BioMed Central’s In Review, a Wiley, ScholarOne, and Publons collaboration, and independent peer review services linked from both Europe PMC (see the “External Links” tab of these results) and bioRxiv (see the section on “Preprint discussion sites” in this example).

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(US) Duke whistleblower gets more than $33 million in research fraud settlement – NPR (Bill Chappell | March 2019)

Duke University is paying the U.S. government $112.5 million to settle accusations that it submitted bogus data to win federal research grants. The settlement will also bring a $33.75 million payment to Joseph Thomas, the whistleblower who drew attention to the fraud when he worked for Duke. Thomas, a former... More

Duke University is paying the U.S. government $112.5 million to settle accusations that it submitted bogus data to win federal research grants. The settlement will also bring a $33.75 million payment to Joseph Thomas, the whistleblower who drew attention to the fraud when he worked for Duke. Thomas, a former Duke lab analyst, sued the university on behalf of the federal government, saying that a Duke researcher fudged data to help the university win and keep lucrative grants from two agencies, the National Institutes of Health and the Environmental Protection Agency. The dozens of grants in question covered the study of the lung function of mice. The Justice Department says Thomas' lawsuit alleged that "between 2006 and 2018, Duke knowingly submitted and caused to be submitted" claims to federal agencies that were unknowingly paying grant money for falsified research data. It adds that while the agreement settles the court case, it does not mean Duke has been determined liable.

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Figure errors, sloppy science, and fraud: keeping eyes on your data (Papers: Corinne L. Williams, et al | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 25, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 30, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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Montenegro just made plagiarism illegal. What does it hope to achieve? – Retraction Watch (Mico Tatalovic | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 25, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 13, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

The parliament of Montenegro, a small country in the southeast of Europe, approved a law on academic integrity earlier this month that effectively criminalizes plagiarism, self-plagiarism and donation of authorship. We spoke to Mubera Kurpejović, director of higher education at the country’s Ministry of Education, explains... More

The parliament of Montenegro, a small country in the southeast of Europe, approved a law on academic integrity earlier this month that effectively criminalizes plagiarism, self-plagiarism and donation of authorship. We spoke to Mubera Kurpejović, director of higher education at the country’s Ministry of Education, explains why the law was needed and what they hope it will achieve. Why did Montenegro need such a law, given that no other country in the region has anything similar?  Adoption of the Law on Academic Integrity is an affirmation of the state’s determination to deal with integrity in a quality manner and thus influence citizens’ awareness of this important issue, as well as their awareness of the harmfulness of the violation of academic integrity. The recommendation to adopt a special law on this came out of a feasibility study on a customized system for the prevention of plagiarism in Montenegro.

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Knowledge and motivations of researchers publishing in presumed predatory journals: a survey (Papers: Kelly D Cobey, et al | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 23, 2019 | Posted by Admin on July 27, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Abstract Objectives To develop effective interventions to prevent publishing in presumed predatory journals (ie, journals that display deceptive characteristics, markers or data that cannot be verified), it is helpful to understand the motivations and experiences of those who have published in these journals. More

Abstract Objectives To develop effective interventions to prevent publishing in presumed predatory journals (ie, journals that display deceptive characteristics, markers or data that cannot be verified), it is helpful to understand the motivations and experiences of those who have published in these journals. Design An online survey delivered to two sets of corresponding authors containing demographic information, and questions about researchers' perceptions of publishing in the presumed predatory journal, type of article processing fees paid and the quality of peer review received. The survey also asked six open-ended items about researchers' motivations and experiences. Participants Using Beall’s lists, we identified two groups of individuals who had published empirical articles in biomedical journals that were presumed to be predatory. Results Eighty-two authors partially responded (~14% response rate (11.4%[44/386] from the initial sample, 19.3%[38/197] from second sample) to our survey. The top three countries represented were India (n=21, 25.9%), USA (n=17, 21.0%) and Ethiopia (n=5, 6.2%). Three participants (3.9%) thought the journal they published in was predatory at the time of article submission. The majority of participants first encountered the journal via an email invitation to submit an article (n=32, 41.0%), or through an online search to find a journal with relevant scope (n=22, 28.2%). Most participants indicated their study received peer review (n=65, 83.3%) and that this was helpful and substantive (n=51, 79.7%). More than a third (n=32, 45.1%) indicated they did not pay fees to publish. Conclusions This work provides some evidence to inform policy to prevent future research from being published in predatory journals. Our research suggests that common views about predatory journals (eg, no peer review) may not always be true, and that a grey zone between legitimate and presumed predatory journals exists. These results are based on self-reports and may be biased thus limiting their interpretation. This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited, appropriate credit is given, any changes made indicated, and the use is non-commercial Cobey KD, Grudniewicz A, Lalu MM, et al Knowledge and motivations of researchers publishing in presumed predatory journals: a survey. BMJ Open 2019;9:e026516. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2018-026516 Publisher (Open Access): https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/9/3/e026516 Less

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(US) Will Me Too Activism Cost Professor Her Job? – Inside Higher Ed (Scott Jaschi | February 2019)

Published/Released on March 22, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

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U.S. Public Health Service STD Experiments in Guatemala (1946–1948) and Their Aftermath – Ethics and Human Research (Kayte Spector‐Bagdady Paul A. Lombardo | March 2019)

ABSTRACT The U.S. Public Health Service’s sexually transmitted disease (STD) experiments in Guatemala are an important case study not only in human subjects research transgressions but also in the response to serious lapses in research ethics. This case study describes how individuals in the STD experiments... More

ABSTRACT The U.S. Public Health Service’s sexually transmitted disease (STD) experiments in Guatemala are an important case study not only in human subjects research transgressions but also in the response to serious lapses in research ethics. This case study describes how individuals in the STD experiments were tested, exposed to STDs, and exploited as the source of biological specimens—all without informed consent and often with active deceit. It also explores and evaluates governmental and professional responses that followed the public revelation of these experiments, including by academic institutions, professional organizations, and the U.S. federal government, pushing us to reconsider both how we prevent such lapses in the future and how we respond when they are first revealed.

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We need to relearn how to play nice in peer review – UA/AU (Daniel Harris | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 19, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 16, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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Fraud Ain’t The Game

Published/Released on March 16, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 1, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Forget about morality. Wrong is wrong.

In a parallel universe, not unlike our own, a graduate student is working late. She is putting the finishing touches on a paper she hopes will be the cornerstone of... More

Forget about morality. Wrong is wrong.

In a parallel universe, not unlike our own, a graduate student is working late. She is putting the finishing touches on a paper she hopes will be the cornerstone of her PhD, which — as much as it’s often reasonably soul-destroying — is progressively becoming more exciting. She works late to preserve this excitement. It gives her hope that maybe one day this rotten, unforgiving business will work out, that she will have a life of curiosity and progress. People doubt her. She does not doubt herself. Or, at least, not too often.

[colored_box]In another parallel universe, a tenured professor who is a complete bastard has finished kicking his neighbour’s garbage bins and yelling at the television for the evening, and slopes off to his study. It is working late nights like this, he grouses in a moment of self-pity, that caused his third wife to leave him (it actually wasn’t this, it’s because he’s a miserable wretch who would try the patience of St. Anthony and wipe the smile off the face of a golden retriever). He is a shiny brittle little man. He is a sneer in a cardigan, a tumble-dried faculty Grinch without the fetching skin tone. He is a martinet, a hypocrite, a bastard, and a ruiner.

Her latest study is a model of good scientific practice and prudence. She has tried to be careful, open, honest, forthright. The studies are correctly powered. The interventions are reasonable. The notes are careful. The data is freshly scrubbed and annotated, should anyone request it. She’s a model citizen. It’s important to her to BE a model citizen.

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Rare trial of open peer review allays common concerns – Nature (Dalmeet Singh Chawla | February 2019)

Published/Released on March 15, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 6, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Study suggests that making reviewers’ reports freely readable doesn’t compromise peer-review process.

[colored_box]A rare analysis of open peer review — in which reviews are posted alongside published papers — has overturned some common conceptions about the practice: notably, that it doesn’t put the reviewers... More

Study suggests that making reviewers’ reports freely readable doesn’t compromise peer-review process.

[colored_box]A rare analysis of open peer review — in which reviews are posted alongside published papers — has overturned some common conceptions about the practice: notably, that it doesn’t put the reviewers off or affect their recommendations on whether to accept a paper. . The analysis, published on 18 January in Nature Communications1, also indicates that open reviewers mostly prefer to remain anonymous, and that they don’t take any longer to complete reviews than in the conventional process. . “I think the case for publishing peer reviews is quite clear in terms of transparency and accountability,” says Tony Ross-Hellauer, an information scientist at the Graz University of Technology in Austria who conducted a 2017 survey about open peer review. “In terms of clearing away some doubts about publishing peer reviews, I think this study is really good news.” .

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Academic Behind Cambridge Analytica Data Mining Sues Facebook for Defamation – New York Times (Matthew Rosenberg | March 2019)

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(Australia Queensland case) Universal Medicine research conducted by devotees won’t be pulled by Queensland uni – ABC (Josh Robertson | March 2019)

A top Australian university has stood by studies into the health benefits of a group that a jury found was a "dangerous cult" making false healing claims, despite its own medical researchers failing to disclose they were devotees. [colored_box]A 10-month investigation by the University of Queensland (UQ) has cleared the... More

A top Australian university has stood by studies into the health benefits of a group that a jury found was a "dangerous cult" making false healing claims, despite its own medical researchers failing to disclose they were devotees. [colored_box]A 10-month investigation by the University of Queensland (UQ) has cleared the researchers of academic misconduct despite finding they did not fully detail their involvement with Universal Medicine (UM). . The studies were published in overseas journals and explored the benefits of UM treatments including "esoteric breast massage" and proposed clinical studies in Vietnamese hospitals that would be forbidden in Australia. .

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New call to ban gene-edited babies divides biologists – Science (Jon Cohen | March 2019)

A prominent group of 18 scientists and bioethicists from seven countries has called for a global “moratorium” on introducing heritable changes into human sperm, eggs, or embryos—germline editing—to make genetically altered children. The group, which published a commentary in Nature today, hopes to influence a long-standing debate that dramatically... More

A prominent group of 18 scientists and bioethicists from seven countries has called for a global “moratorium” on introducing heritable changes into human sperm, eggs, or embryos—germline editing—to make genetically altered children. The group, which published a commentary in Nature today, hopes to influence a long-standing debate that dramatically intensified after China’s He Jiankui announced in November 2018 that he used the genome editor CRISPR to try to alter the genes of babies to be resistant to the AIDS virus. [colored_box]Their call, which is endorsed in the same issue of Nature by Francis Collins, director of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, is a departure from statements issued by two global summits on genome editing in 2015 and 2018, a 2017 report from the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM), and a 2018 report from the United Kingdom’s Nuffield Council on Bioethics. None has banned human germline editing, and most have stressed that it holds promise to help correct some heritable diseases. All have warned against using germline editing for cognitive or physical “enhancement” of people. Scientists including Nobel laureate David Baltimore of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena remain opposed to a moratorium. Even in the wake of the He incident, Baltimore, who helped organize the summits, denounced such a ban as “draconian” and “antithetical to the goals of science.” . Any nation that wants to greenlight a human germline edit by its scientists, the 18 authors declare, should have to give public notice, engage in an international and transparent assessment of whether the intervention is justified, and make sure the work has broad support in their own nation. “Nations might well choose different paths, but they would agree to proceed openly and with due respect to the opinions of humankind on an issue that will ultimately affect the entire species,” they write. They strongly encourage that nonscientific perspectives, including those of people with disabilities and religious groups, be included in the discussion. And they stress that they are not calling for a moratorium on genome editing of somatic cells, which would not affect future generations. .

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Adopt a moratorium on heritable genome editing – Nature (Eric Lander, et al | March 2019)

We call for a global moratorium on all clinical uses of human germline editing — that is, changing heritable DNA (in sperm, eggs or embryos) to make genetically modified children. By ‘global moratorium’, we do not mean a permanent ban. Rather, we call for the establishment of an international framework... More

We call for a global moratorium on all clinical uses of human germline editing — that is, changing heritable DNA (in sperm, eggs or embryos) to make genetically modified children. By ‘global moratorium’, we do not mean a permanent ban. Rather, we call for the establishment of an international framework in which nations, while retaining the right to make their own decisions, voluntarily commit to not approve any use of clinical germline editing unless certain conditions are met. To begin with, there should be a fixed period during which no clinical uses of germline editing whatsoever are allowed. As well as allowing for discussions about the technical, scientific, medical, societal, ethical and moral issues that must be considered before germline editing is permitted, this period would provide time to establish an international framework.

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On “truly” understanding the risk – The Ethics Blog (Pär Segerdahl | March 2019)

Pär SegerdahlIt is a well-known psychological fact that people have great difficulties to understand probabilistic risks. What does it actually mean that the risk of developing breast cancer the next ten years is fifteen percent? In addition to the difficulties of... More

Pär SegerdahlIt is a well-known psychological fact that people have great difficulties to understand probabilistic risks. What does it actually mean that the risk of developing breast cancer the next ten years is fifteen percent? In addition to the difficulties of understanding probabilities, mathematical expressions can cause a false appearance of exactitude and objectivity. It is often about uncertain evaluations, but expressed in seemingly definitive figures. At our Monday seminar, Ulrik Kihlbom discussed another difficulty with understanding risk information. It can be difficult to understand not only the probabilities, but also what it is you risk experiencing. Sometimes, people face enormously complex choices, where the risks are high, but also the benefits. Perhaps you suffer from a serious disease from which you will die. However, there is a treatment, and it may work. It is just that the treatment has such severe side effects that you may die even from the treatment. Ulrik Kihlbom interviewed physicians treating patients with leukemia. The doctors stated that patients often do not understand the risks of the treatment they are offered. The difficulty is not so much about understanding the risk of dying from the treatment. The patients understand that risk. However, the doctors said, no one who has not actually seen the side effects understand that the treatment can make you so incredibly ill.

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#MeToo and Health Research Ethics – The Hastings Center (Kathleen Bachynski | March 2019)

As a public health researcher interested in brain injuries in sports, I was searching for peer-reviewed literature that examined cultural pressures that cause athletes to minimize symptoms of potentially serious injuries when I came across a 1994 article entitled, “A Little Pain Never Hurt Anybody: A Photo-Essay on the... More

As a public health researcher interested in brain injuries in sports, I was searching for peer-reviewed literature that examined cultural pressures that cause athletes to minimize symptoms of potentially serious injuries when I came across a 1994 article entitled, “A Little Pain Never Hurt Anybody: A Photo-Essay on the Normalization of Sport Injuries.” The identity of one of the authors cast the study in a suspicious light: Dr. Richard Strauss, the Ohio State University physician who has been accused by more than 100 former students of sexual abuse. His article was a “visual study” with numerous photos of student wrestlers. It claimed to “convey some of the details and social ambiance of today’s approach to collegiate sports medicine.”  A research method that involves photographing injured students, both at the time of injury and while undergoing medical examinations and surgical procedures, also involves significant intimate contact with a vulnerable population. In such circumstances, patients must be able to fully trust the researcher’s integrity, honesty, and respect for persons. The irony that a doctor accused of groping his patients’ genitalia also studied the cultural belief that “a little pain never hurt anybody” astonishes me. Furthermore, I am concerned about the implications of accused serial sexual abusers publishing in academic literature: that they can use their position of authority to not only enhance their professional status but also to shape academic knowledge. According to Google Scholar, at least 117 articles have cited Strauss’ photo-essay. One 2005 article described it as an example of how the technique of photo-interviewing provided “a way to get people to talk about more difficult and abstract concepts.”

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China to tighten rules on gene editing in humans – Nature (David Cyranoski | March 2019)

In the wake of the gene-edited-baby scandal, scientists and institutions could face tough penalties for breaking the rules.

China’s health ministry has issued draft regulations that will restrict the use of gene editing in humans, just three months after Chinese researcher He Jiankui announced... More

In the wake of the gene-edited-baby scandal, scientists and institutions could face tough penalties for breaking the rules.

China’s health ministry has issued draft regulations that will restrict the use of gene editing in humans, just three months after Chinese researcher He Jiankui announced that twin girls had been born with edited genomes. The proposal includes severe penalties for those who break the rules. If approved, scientists say the policy could have gains and drawbacks for research. The draft regulations, issued by the National Health Commission on 26 February, state that gene editing in any type of cell that will end up in humans, including embryos, will need the commission’s approval, as will other high-risk biomedical procedures. The regulations come in response to He’s claim, in late November, that he used the gene-editing technology CRISPR–Cas9 to alter the genomes of embryos — a process known as germline editing — to make them resistant to HIV. He then implanted the edited embryos into women. News that twin girls had been born as a result of these experiments prompted an international outcry about He’s use of a risky and unproven technology.

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A decade of empirical research on research integrity: what have we (not) looked at? (Papers: Noémie Aubert Bonn & Wim Pinxten | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 20, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Abstract In the past decades, increasing visibility of research misconduct scandals created momentum for discourses on research integrity to such an extent that the topic became a field of research itself. Yet, a comprehensive overview of research in the field is still missing. Here we describe... More

Abstract In the past decades, increasing visibility of research misconduct scandals created momentum for discourses on research integrity to such an extent that the topic became a field of research itself. Yet, a comprehensive overview of research in the field is still missing. Here we describe methods, trends, publishing patterns, and impact of a decade of research on research integrity. To give a comprehensive overview of research on research integrity, we first systematically searched SCOPUS, Web of Science, and PubMed for relevant articles published in English between 2005 and 2015. We then classified each relevant article according to its topic, several methodological characteristics, its general focus and findings, and its citation impact. We included 986 articles in our analysis. We found that the body of literature on research integrity is growing in importance, and that the field is still largely dominated by non-empirical publications. Within the bulk of empirical records (N=342), researchers and students are most often studied, but other actors and the social context in which they interact, seem to be overlooked. The few empirical articles that examined determinants of misconduct found that problems from the research system (e.g., pressure, competition) were most likely to cause inadequate research practices. Paradoxically, the majority of empirical articles proposing approaches to foster integrity focused on techniques to build researchers’ awareness and compliance rather than techniques to change the research system. Our review highlights the areas, methods, and actors favoured in research on research integrity, and reveals a few blindspots. Involving non-researchers and reconnecting what is known to the approaches investigated may be the first step to generate executable knowledge that will allow us to increase the success of future approaches.

Bonn, N.A. & Pinxten, W. (2019) A decade of empirical research on research integrity: what have we (not) looked at? bioRxiv. 567263; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/567263 Publisher (Open Access): https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/567263v1

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Peer-review experiments tracked in online repository – Nature (Richard Van Noorden | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

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Springer Nature Syndicates Content to ResearchGate – Scholarly Kitchen (Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe | March 2019)

Published/Released on March 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 7, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Ever since Springer Nature and ResearchGate announced their cooperative agreement this past April, many have wondered what exactly the “sharing of articles on the scholarly collaboration platform in a way that protects the rights of authors and publishers” might look like. Today, we get our first... More

Ever since Springer Nature and ResearchGate announced their cooperative agreement this past April, many have wondered what exactly the “sharing of articles on the scholarly collaboration platform in a way that protects the rights of authors and publishers” might look like. Today, we get our first glimpse. Springer Nature and ResearchGate have announced that “full-text articles published in select Nature journals since November 2017 will be rolled out to researchers’ ResearchGate profiles starting now and completed by March 7, making it easier to read or download research on or off campus from that moment on.” I had a chance to speak yesterday with Steven Inchcoombe, Chief Publishing Officer at Springer Nature, and Ijad Madisch, CEO of ResearchGate, about this project. Though small in scope, the importance of this project should not be overlooked. This pilot project represents the first significant experiment with the syndication of publisher content to a content supercontinent. My fellow Scholarly Kitchen contributor, Roger Schonfeld, has been tracking this emerging strategy and exploring it in recent months.

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Sexual harassment rife in Australian science, suggests first workplace survey – Science (February 2019)

Published/Released on February 28, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 26, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

One in two female respondents to a national poll has been sexually harassed at work.

Nearly half the female scientists who responded to an Australian survey on sexual misconduct at work have experienced sexual harassment. In More

One in two female respondents to a national poll has been sexually harassed at work.

Nearly half the female scientists who responded to an Australian survey on sexual misconduct at work have experienced sexual harassment. In a report released today, 10% of male scientists also said they had been sexually harassed at work. [colored_box]The poll represents the first investigation into the prevalence of sexual harassment among Australian scientists and technologists working in industry, the public sector or non-profit organizations, as well as academia. Almost 300 science professionals answered the questions in an online poll conducted by Science & Technology Australia (STA), an organization based in Canberra that lobbies for the interests of scientists. . Previous surveys of students in Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom have found widespread harassment at universities. The latest results show that harassment is rife across all types of scientific workplace. .

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(US) University of Illinois at Chicago Missed Warning Signs of Research Going Awry, Letters Show – Propublica Illinois (Jodi S. Cohen | March 2019)

Published/Released on February 28, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 31, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

UIC has played down its shortcomings in overseeing the work of a prominent child psychiatrist, but newly obtained documents show that the school acknowledged its lapses to federal officials.

This story was co-published with The Chronicle of... More

UIC has played down its shortcomings in overseeing the work of a prominent child psychiatrist, but newly obtained documents show that the school acknowledged its lapses to federal officials.

This story was co-published with The Chronicle of Higher Education and the Chicago Sun-Times.

For a year, the University of Illinois at Chicago has downplayed its shortcomings in overseeing the work of a prominent child psychiatrist who violated research protocols and put vulnerable children with bipolar disorder at risk.

But documents newly obtained by ProPublica Illinois show that UIC acknowledged to federal officials that it had missed several warning signs that Dr. Mani Pavuluri’s clinical trial on lithium had gone off track, eventually requiring the university to pay an unprecedented $3.1 million penalty to the federal government.

UIC’s Institutional Review Board, the committee responsible for protecting research subjects, improperly fast-tracked approval of Pavuluri’s clinical trial, didn’t catch serious omissions from the consent forms parents had to sign and allowed children to enroll in the study even though they weren’t eligible, the documents show.

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(US) NIH apologizes for its failure to address sexual harassment in science – STAT (Lev Facher | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 28, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 29, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

[colored_box]WASHINGTON — The National Institutes of Health on Thursday apologized for its past failures to recognize and address the culture of sexual harassment that has impacted scientists for generations. . “To all those who have endured these experiences, we are sorry that it has taken so long to acknowledge... More

[colored_box]WASHINGTON — The National Institutes of Health on Thursday apologized for its past failures to recognize and address the culture of sexual harassment that has impacted scientists for generations. . “To all those who have endured these experiences, we are sorry that it has taken so long to acknowledge and address the climate and culture that has caused such harm,” NIH Director Francis Collins said in a statement. . Sexual harassment in science, Collins said, is “morally indefensible, it’s unacceptable, and it presents a major obstacle that is keeping women from achieving their rightful place in science.” .

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(China) Academic integrity gets renewed stress in aftermath of actor’s misconduct case – ECNS.cn (Jing Yuxin | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 28, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 1, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

The Ministry of Education has asked universities with advanced degree programs to strengthen their supervision of student enrollment and management after a few high-profile academic misconduct cases tarnished the reputation of the country's postgraduate education. The ministry has zero tolerance for academic misconduct, such as plagiarism,... More

The Ministry of Education has asked universities with advanced degree programs to strengthen their supervision of student enrollment and management after a few high-profile academic misconduct cases tarnished the reputation of the country's postgraduate education. The ministry has zero tolerance for academic misconduct, such as plagiarism, and universities should scrutinize every step of graduate writing, from choosing research topics to dissertation defense, it said in a statement on Wednesday. Any misconduct will be dealt with seriously, and academic papers, theses and dissertations will be shared with other institutions to add more scrutiny, it said.

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China tightens its regulation of some human gene editing, labeling it ‘high-risk’ – Science (Dennis Normile | February 2019)

In the wake of the shocking news that one of its scientists had produced genetically altered babies, the Chinese government this week issued draft regulations that would require national approval for clinical research involving gene editing and other “high-risk biomedical technologies.” Although some Chinese researchers welcome the move to... More

In the wake of the shocking news that one of its scientists had produced genetically altered babies, the Chinese government this week issued draft regulations that would require national approval for clinical research involving gene editing and other “high-risk biomedical technologies.” Although some Chinese researchers welcome the move to tighten oversight, there are worries that the rules could impose a burden on areas of genetic research that are not so controversial. “I am happy to see the national regulations regarding new biomedical technologies; I think this makes relevant policy more clear,” says Wei Jia, a medical oncologist who is involved with an ongoing trial using gene editing to modify cancer patient T-cells at the Affiliated Nanjing Drum Tower Hospital of Nanjing University Medical School in China. The regulations are in response to the late November 2018 claim by He Jiankui, then of Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen, China, that he had altered the DNA embryos in a way that would give the babies and their descendants resistance to HIV. This approach is called germline engineering—it can involve changing DNA in embryos or sperm or eggs—and is banned in many countries, by law or regulation. He’s effort, using a technique called CRISPR, resulted in twin girls born last fall; one more baby, he said, is on the way. The experiment earned He worldwide condemnation for prematurely using a still glitchy technique that might negatively affect the babies’ development and health in a medically unnecessary and unjustified intervention.

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(US/China) When DNA science goes down an unethical path in China, who is responsible? – Medical Xpress (Brittany Meiling, et al | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 28, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 24, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

New reports that China is using DNA science developed in San Diego County for widespread ethnic surveillance raise ethical questions about who is responsible for how that technology is used. The New York Times reported recently that Chinese authorities are building a DNA database of the country's Uighur minority, a... More

New reports that China is using DNA science developed in San Diego County for widespread ethnic surveillance raise ethical questions about who is responsible for how that technology is used. The New York Times reported recently that Chinese authorities are building a DNA database of the country's Uighur minority, a predominantly Muslim ethnic group blamed for a series of terrorist attacks in northwestern China. Since 2016, there have been regular reports of authorities taking blood samples in the Xinjiang region, where ethnic tensions have been rising. The situation has evolved into a Muslim crackdown in China, with nearly one million Uighurs and other minorities reportedly held in "re-education" camps bent on making Muslims more subservient to the Communist Party. There, Uighurs are being forced to hand over genetic samples, which activists worry could later be used by authorities to chase down any Uighurs who resist the indoctrination.

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(US) UMKC says pharmacy professor stole student’s research and sold it for millions – The Kansas City Star (Mike Hendricks & Mará Rose Williams | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 27, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

UMKC pharmacy professor Ashim Mitra stole a student’s research and sold it secretly to a pharmaceutical company, defrauding the university of millions of dollars, the University of Missouri alleges in a lawsuit filed Tuesday. [colored_box]Mitra, the suit alleges, already has improperly reaped $1.5 million from the sale and has the... More

UMKC pharmacy professor Ashim Mitra stole a student’s research and sold it secretly to a pharmaceutical company, defrauding the university of millions of dollars, the University of Missouri alleges in a lawsuit filed Tuesday. [colored_box]Mitra, the suit alleges, already has improperly reaped $1.5 million from the sale and has the potential of earning $10 million more in royalties over the next five years from what the university says could be a billion-dollar drug. . The suit said the money rightfully belongs to the university because the student who developed a new and more effective way to deliver drugs to the eye — through nanotechnology — did so while employed as a graduate research assistant at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. .

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Guidelines for open peer review implementation (Paper: Tony Ross-Hellauer and Edit Görögh | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 27, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 28, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Abstract Open peer review (OPR) is moving into the mainstream, but it is often poorly understood and surveys of researcher attitudes show important barriers to implementation. As more journals move to implement and experiment with the myriad of innovations covered by this term, there is a... More

Abstract Open peer review (OPR) is moving into the mainstream, but it is often poorly understood and surveys of researcher attitudes show important barriers to implementation. As more journals move to implement and experiment with the myriad of innovations covered by this term, there is a clear need for best practice guidelines to guide implementation. This brief article aims to address this knowledge gap, reporting work based on an interactive stakeholder workshop to create best-practice guidelines for editors and journals who wish to transition to OPR. Although the advice is aimed mainly at editors and publishers of scientific journals, since this is the area in which OPR is at its most mature, many of the principles may also be applicable for the implementation of OPR in other areas (e.g., books, conference submissions). Keywords Peer review, Guidelines, Open peer review, Scholarly publishing, Open science

Ross-Hellauer, T. and Görögh, E. (2019) Guidelines for open peer review implementation. Research Integrity and Peer Review. 4(4) https://doi.org/10.1186/s41073-019-0063-9 Publisher (Open Access): https://researchintegrityjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s41073-019-0063-9

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The CRISPR-baby scandal: what’s next for human gene-editing – Nature (David Cyranoski | February 2019)

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Why were scientists silent over gene-edited babies? – Nature (Natalie Kofler | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 12, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

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High-profile subscription journals critique Plan S – Nature (Holly Else | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 26, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 23, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Publishers say that the bold open-access initiative rules out proven ways of opening up the literature.

Publishers of highly selective scholarly journals — including Nature and Science — say that they cannot comply with Plan... More

Publishers say that the bold open-access initiative rules out proven ways of opening up the literature.

Publishers of highly selective scholarly journals — including Nature and Science — say that they cannot comply with Plan S, a European-led initiative that mandates free access to research results on publication from 2020, unless its rules are changed. Their appeals come as part of a massive consultation on how the open-access initiative should work, which closed on 8 February and received about 600 responses, including from most of the world’s major academic publishers. Many publishers told the Plan S coalition that they support the general aims of the initiative, but don’t agree on its details. They also say the timeframe for the transition is too short.

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Chinese government funding may have been used for ‘CRISPR babies’ project, documents suggest – STAT (Jane Qiu | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 25, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 19, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

BEIJING — Three government institutions in China, including the nation’s science ministry, may have funded the “CRISPR babies” study that led to the birth last November of two genetically modified twin girls, according to documents reviewed by STAT.

These findings appear to support what many... More

BEIJING — Three government institutions in China, including the nation’s science ministry, may have funded the “CRISPR babies” study that led to the birth last November of two genetically modified twin girls, according to documents reviewed by STAT.

These findings appear to support what many researchers inside and outside China have suspected since scientist He Jiankui revealed the births in late November, sparking international condemnation for violating scientific guidelines against the use of gene-edited human embryos to start pregnancies. “I don’t think He Jiankui could have done it without the government encouragement to press ahead” with research they thought would merit a Nobel Prize, said Jing-Bao Nie, a bioethicist at the University of Otago in New Zealand.

If the documents are correct, they would suggest China is supporting research that the U.S. and other countries consider unethical, and raise doubts about the preliminary conclusion of a government investigation that He acted mostly on his own. That inquiry, which was led by the Guangdong provincial health commission and involved the science ministry and the National Health Commission, determined that He raised funding for the experiment on his own without official endorsement. It also concluded that He forged an informed-consent form and violated scientific ethics and Chinese regulations, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

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Personality and fatal diseases: Revisiting a scientific scandal (Papers: Anthony J Pelosi | February 2019)

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Why journal editors should dig deeper when authors ask for a retraction – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 21, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

Imagine you’re a journal editor. A group of authors sends you a request to retract one of their papers, saying that “during figure assembly certain images were inappropriately processed.” What do you do next? Do you ask some tough questions about just what “inappropriately processed” means? Do you check your... More

Imagine you’re a journal editor. A group of authors sends you a request to retract one of their papers, saying that “during figure assembly certain images were inappropriately processed.” What do you do next? Do you ask some tough questions about just what “inappropriately processed” means? Do you check your files for whether the author’s institution had told you about an investigation into the work? Do you Google the author’s names? Do you…search Retraction Watch? It seems unlikely that any of those things happened in the case of a recent retraction from Nature Communications, or, if they did, they don’t seem to have informed the notice. We don’t know for sure, because, as is typical, the journal isn’t saying much. But here’s what we do know.

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He Jiankui’s Germline Editing Ethics Article Retracted by The CRISPR Journal – GEN (Julianna LeMieux – February 2019)

Published/Released on February 20, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

Failure to disclose conflicts of interest was "unacceptable"

Twelve weeks after publishing a perspective on the ethics of gene editing by He Jiankui, PhD, the scientist reportedly responsible for the first gene-edited humans, the editors of The CRISPR Journal have decided to retract the... More

Failure to disclose conflicts of interest was "unacceptable"

Twelve weeks after publishing a perspective on the ethics of gene editing by He Jiankui, PhD, the scientist reportedly responsible for the first gene-edited humans, the editors of The CRISPR Journal have decided to retract the article, GEN can exclusively report. [colored_box]In late November, the shocking news of the genetically edited twin girls broke out on the eve of the second international Human Genome Editing Summit in Hong Kong. The creation of germline-edited humans was unprecedented and not something that the scientific community had prepared for. . Most of the attention focused on the actions of 34-year-old He, formerly a professor at the Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech) in Shenzhen. He’s decision to ignore advice from prominent members of the scientific community and serious questions over the technical and ethical procedures prompted an immediate investigation by Chinese authorities while he was held under house arrest, culminating in his dismissal by SUSTech last month.| .

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Move clinical trial data sharing from an option to an imperative – STAT (Rebecca Li | February 2019)

Data from clinical trials have long been locked away, some in this principal investigator’s computer bank, some in that pharmaceutical company’s cloud. For years we have been talking about opening up those vaults and freeing these data. The key has finally turned: Data sharing is becoming... More

Data from clinical trials have long been locked away, some in this principal investigator’s computer bank, some in that pharmaceutical company’s cloud. For years we have been talking about opening up those vaults and freeing these data. The key has finally turned: Data sharing is becoming the new reality.

From Jan. 1, 2019, onward, the world’s leading medical journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, the Lancet, Annals of Internal Medicine, BMJ, and thousands more require authors to disclose whether and how they plan to share deidentified raw data from individual participants in their clinical trials. What’s more, researchers wishing to publish in these journals must declare their data-sharing plans in a public registry, such as ClinicalTrials.gov.

It’s a radical departure from where we’ve been. In my former life conducting trials as a scientist in industry and for the National Institutes of Health, when I’d log onto ClinicalTrials.gov to register a new trial, I didn’t have to give a second thought to if or how I’d be sharing data from the trial. Now all researchers need to think about that from the very beginning, even before the first trial participant is enrolled.

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Publish and Perish: The Dangers of Being Young and in a Hurry (Papers: James S. Huntley | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 19, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 5, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , ,

Abstract Publications in peer-reviewed journals are a key and official requirement for progression to a consultant surgeon post. Paradoxically, a stipulation that should enhance the importance of surgical research may, in fact, contribute to a pressure that is one of the causes of research misconduct. Consultant trainers can... More

Abstract Publications in peer-reviewed journals are a key and official requirement for progression to a consultant surgeon post. Paradoxically, a stipulation that should enhance the importance of surgical research may, in fact, contribute to a pressure that is one of the causes of research misconduct. Consultant trainers can go some way to mitigating against this danger with appropriate teaching and an emphasis on the core values surrounding research ethics.

Huntley J S (February 19, 2019) Publish and Perish: The Dangers of Being Young and in a Hurry. Cureus 11(2): e4098. doi:10.7759/cureus.4098 Publisher (Editorial): https://www.cureus.com/articles/17575-publish-and-perish-the-dangers-of-being-young-and-in-a-hurry

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To move research from quantity to quality, go beyond good intentions – Nature ( Alan Finkel | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 19, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 3, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Australian chief scientist Alan Finkel calls for formal action to bake in better research practices.

In 1969, I skipped school to watch the Moon landing from home. Fifty years later, I struggle to think of an... More

Australian chief scientist Alan Finkel calls for formal action to bake in better research practices.

In 1969, I skipped school to watch the Moon landing from home. Fifty years later, I struggle to think of an event that would justify truancy today. It’s not for lack of stunning breakthroughs in research, but rather their frequency: if children neglected their work every time the television reported another scientific milestone that my generation scarcely dared to contemplate, they’d end up with no education at all. Yet there is a growing rumble of concern about the rigour and reproducibility of published research. Problems of over-hyped analysis and puffed-up CVs are well recognized. Financial and career incentives keep researchers on a treadmill, churning out papers. We cannot know how many of the 1.6 million or so papers now added every year to the Web of Science database are flawed as a consequence, but we can agree that our focus has to shift from quantity to quality if we are to safeguard against shoddy work.

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Major medical journals don’t follow their own rules for reporting results from clinical trials – Science (Jocelyn Kaiser | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 15, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 19, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

It’s a well-known problem with clinical trials: Researchers start out saying they will look for a particular outcome—heart attacks, for example—but then report something else when they publish their results. That practice can make a drug or treatment look like it’s safer or more effective than it actually is.... More

It’s a well-known problem with clinical trials: Researchers start out saying they will look for a particular outcome—heart attacks, for example—but then report something else when they publish their results. That practice can make a drug or treatment look like it’s safer or more effective than it actually is. Now, a systematic effort to find out whether major journals are complying with their own pledge to ensure that outcomes are reported correctly has found many are falling down on the job—and both journals and authors are full of excuses. [colored_box]When journals and researchers were asked to correct studies, the responses “were fascinating, and alarming. Editors and researchers routinely misunderstand what correct trial reporting looks like,” says project leader Ben Goldacre, an author and physician at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom and a proponent of transparency in drug research. . Starting 4 years ago, his team’s Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine Outcome Monitoring Project (COMPare) project examined all trials published over 6 weeks in five journals: Annals of Internal Medicine, The BMJ, JAMA, The Lancet, and The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). The study topics ranged from the health effects of drinking alcohol for diabetics to a comparison of two kidney cancer drugs. All five journals have endorsed long-established Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) guidelines. One CONSORT rule is that authors should describe the outcomes they plan to study before a trial starts and stick to that list when they publish the trial. .

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(China) Researcher who edited babies’ genome retreats from view as criticism mounts – BMJ (Chang-Qing Gao, et al | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 13, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 19, 2019

Re: Researcher who edited babies’ genome retreats from view as criticism mounts --- Making ethics committees fit for purpose in China

[colored_box]Following the recent scandal over babies born in China after gene editing, the failure of ethical oversight of biomedical research requires urgent attention.1... More

Re: Researcher who edited babies’ genome retreats from view as criticism mounts --- Making ethics committees fit for purpose in China

[colored_box]Following the recent scandal over babies born in China after gene editing, the failure of ethical oversight of biomedical research requires urgent attention.1 Ethics committees are now established in more and more hospitals in China.2-5 These ethics committees review, for example, clinical trial protocols, applications for assisted reproduction procedures, and issues related to grant applications, as well as being involved in organ transplantation and other special treatments.5 The number of these applications is increasing quickly, hence the work of the ethics committees is mounting.3 . There are, however, numerous difficulties for ethics committees in China. . First, the independence and fairness of ethics committees is questionable. This begins with the composition of the committee.3-6 Studies show that up to 96% of the chairpersons of ethics committees are administrative officials of institutions, such as the president of the hospital,6,7 and the majority of committee members are directors of related departments.4,5-7 To make matters worse, financial support for the majority of ethics committee is from their own institutions.2 These factors lead to potential of bias in favor of the institution and its researchers.3,7 .

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(US) This neuroscientist is fighting sexual harassment in science – but her own job is in peril – Science (By Meredith Wadmam | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 12, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 3, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

BethAnn McLaughlin has no time for James Watson, especially not when the 90-year-old geneticist is peering out from a photo on the wall of her guest room at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s Banbury Center. [colored_box]“I don’t need him staring at me when I’m trying to go to sleep,” McLaughlin told... More

BethAnn McLaughlin has no time for James Watson, especially not when the 90-year-old geneticist is peering out from a photo on the wall of her guest room at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s Banbury Center. [colored_box]“I don’t need him staring at me when I’m trying to go to sleep,” McLaughlin told a December 2018 gathering at the storied New York meeting center as she projected a photo of her redecorating job: She had hung a washcloth over the image of Watson, who co-discovered DNA’s structure, directed the lab for decades—and is well-known for racist and sexist statements. . The washcloth image was part of McLaughlin’s unconventional presentation—by turns sobering, hilarious, passionate, and profane—to two dozen experts who had gathered to wrestle with how to end gender discrimination in the biosciences. McLaughlin, a 51-year-old neuroscientist at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) in Nashville, displayed the names of current members of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) who have been sanctioned for sexual harassment. She urged other NAS members—several of whom sat in the room—to resign in protest, “as one does.” She chided institutions for passing along “harassholes” to other universities. “The only other places that do this are the Catholic Church and the military,” she said. .

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The Fraud Finder: A conversation with Elisabeth Bik – The Last Word on Nothing (Sally Adee | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 12, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

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(US) Overdue: a US advisory board for research integrity – Nature (C. K. Gunsalus, et al | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 11, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 23, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Research needs an authoritative forum to hash out collective problems, argue C. K. Gunsalus, Marcia K. McNutt and colleagues

When it comes to fostering rigour and scientific integrity, US research institutions are stuck. Working out best practice is far from straightforward, and faculty members... More

Research needs an authoritative forum to hash out collective problems, argue C. K. Gunsalus, Marcia K. McNutt and colleagues

When it comes to fostering rigour and scientific integrity, US research institutions are stuck. Working out best practice is far from straightforward, and faculty members can be resistant to top-down directives. So, on a day-to-day basis, the conventions that research groups have for documenting methods and results, conducting analyses and allocating credit are often less than optimal. At worst, they can encourage dishonesty and scandal. For example, in April 2017, Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and its health-care network agreed to pay US$10 million to settle fraud allegations in stem-cell research funding. (Researchers contest who is at fault.) The hospital has requested retractions of more than 30 papers, and a clinical trial involving more than 100 participants has been paused while data are reviewed. Resources that might have brought better medical care have been squandered. [colored_box]Building a culture of quality and integrity requires conversations across the scientific enterprise. Science is a complex ecosystem of funders, journals, academic administrators, scientific societies and researchers — the latter group including principal investigators, staff scientists, postdocs and graduate students. The interests of each group conflict as often as they overlap, and interactions tend to be stratified and constrained. Institutional presidents sit on working groups with each other but not with research-integrity officers. These officers attend conferences with each other, but not with faculty advisers and bench scientists. Journal editors meet scientists and other editors, but not institutional officers, on whom they rely for investigation when concerns about manuscripts arise. . In the United States, a fractured, inefficient, inconsistent system has built up over the past 70 years to protect research quality and integrity. Separate and sometimes overlapping mechanisms focus on distinct areas, such as oversight of trial participants and animal subjects, data management, financial transactions and declarations of interest. .

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Organ transplants from executed Chinese prisoners and research ethics – Radio National ABC (Norman Swan | February 2019)

Macquarie University researchers say hundreds of journal papers in the transplant field don’t follow ethical guidelines in declaring whether or not their research includes transplants from executed prisoners in China. The researchers want the papers retracted, saying it creates a moral hazard for the entire field of research. Guest: Professor Wendy Rogers More

Macquarie University researchers say hundreds of journal papers in the transplant field don’t follow ethical guidelines in declaring whether or not their research includes transplants from executed prisoners in China. The researchers want the papers retracted, saying it creates a moral hazard for the entire field of research. Guest: Professor Wendy Rogers

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Children in Social Research: Do Higher Payments Encourage Participation in Riskier Studies? (Stephanie Taplin, et al | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 09, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 18, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

Abstract [colored_box]The MESSI (Managing Ethical Studies on Sensitive Issues) study used hypothetical scenarios, presented via a brief online survey, to explore whether payment amounts influenced Australian children and young people to participate in social research of different sensitivity. They were more likely to participate in the... More

Abstract [colored_box]The MESSI (Managing Ethical Studies on Sensitive Issues) study used hypothetical scenarios, presented via a brief online survey, to explore whether payment amounts influenced Australian children and young people to participate in social research of different sensitivity. They were more likely to participate in the lower sensitivity study than in the higher at all payment levels (A$200 prize draw, no payment, $30, or $100). Offering payments to children and young people increased the likelihood that they would agree to participate in the studies and, in general, the higher the payments, the higher the likelihood of their participating. No evidence of undue influence was detected: payments can be used to increase the participation of children and young people in research without concerns of undue influence on their behavior in the face of relatively risky research. When considering the level of payment, however, the overriding consideration should be the level of risk to the children and young people. . Keywords children and adolescent, pediatrics, justice, participant selection, inclusion, recruitment, payment for research participation, research ethics, risks, benefits, and burdens of research, beneficence and nonmaleficence, vignette studies, decision-making capacity, surrogate decision makers, parental consent, child assent, voluntariness, coercion .

Taplin, S., Chalmers, J., Hoban, B., McArthur, M., Moore, T. and Graham, A. (2019) Research Ethics Committees’ Oversight of Biomedical Research in South Africa: A Thematic Analysis of Ethical Issues Raised During Ethics Review of Non-Expedited Protocols. Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics. Publisher:

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We need to talk about systematic fraud – Nature (Jennifer Byrne | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 09, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 28, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

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Chem journal yanks paper because authors had stolen it as peer reviewers – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 08, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 5, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

The UK’s Royal Society of Chemistry has retracted a 2017 paper in one of its journals after learning that the authors stole the article from other researchers during peer review. The offending article, “Typical and interstratified arrangements in Zn/Al layered double hydroxides: an experimental and theoretical approach,” appeared in CrystalEngComm,... More

The UK’s Royal Society of Chemistry has retracted a 2017 paper in one of its journals after learning that the authors stole the article from other researchers during peer review. The offending article, “Typical and interstratified arrangements in Zn/Al layered double hydroxides: an experimental and theoretical approach,” appeared in CrystalEngComm, and was written by Priyadarshi Roy Chowdhury and Krishna G. Bhattacharyya, of Gauhati University in Jalukbari. Well, that’s not really true, is it? The retraction notice lays out the transgression in detail:

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The Ethics Ecosystem: Personal Ethics, Network Governance and Regulating Actors Governing the Use of Social Media Research Data (Papers: Gabrielle Samuel, et al | February 2019)

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Whose hearts, livers and lungs are transplanted in China? Origins must be clear in human organ research – The Conversation (Wendy Rogers and Matthew Robertson | February 2019)

Scientist He Jiankui’s claimed use of the genetic tool CRISPR to edit the genomes of twin girls led to international condemnation. His actions have focused a spotlight on research ethics – and what the consequences should be when scientists “go... More

Scientist He Jiankui’s claimed use of the genetic tool CRISPR to edit the genomes of twin girls led to international condemnation. His actions have focused a spotlight on research ethics – and what the consequences should be when scientists “go rogue”. The Chinese Academy of Science initially looked into He’s conduct, and a subsequent internal government investigation has allegedly identified multiple violations of state laws. He has now been fired by his university.


Read more: Tension as scientist at centre of CRISPR outrage speaks at genome editing summit
But beyond just this example, what does happen when scientists fail to comply with globally-accepted guidelines for ethical medical research? We examined this issue focusing on published research involving recipients of organ transplants performed in the People’s Republic of China.\

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Call for retraction of 400 scientific papers amid fears organs came from Chinese prisoners – The Guardian (Melissa Davey | February 2019)

Study finds failure of English language medical journals to comply with international ethical standards

A world-first study has called for the mass retraction of more than 400 scientific papers on organ transplantation, amid fears the organs were obtained unethically from... More

Study finds failure of English language medical journals to comply with international ethical standards

A world-first study has called for the mass retraction of more than 400 scientific papers on organ transplantation, amid fears the organs were obtained unethically from Chinese prisoners. The Australian-led study exposes a mass failure of English language medical journals to comply with international ethical standards in place to ensure organ donors provide consent for transplantation. The study was published on Wednesday in the medical journal BMJ Open. Its author, the professor of clinical ethics Wendy Rogers, said journals, researchers and clinicians who used the research were complicit in “barbaric” methods of organ procurement.

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Should journals credit eagle-eyed readers by name in retraction notices? – Retraction Watch (Benjamin Mazer | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 06, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 12, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

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(JAP) Japanese stem cell fraud leads to a new retraction – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | January 2019)

Published/Released on February 04, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 23, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , , , ,

Last March, we reported on the retraction of a 2017 paper in Stem Cell Reports by Kohei Yamamizu and colleagues for widespread fabrication of figures. Turns out the problems were at least five years older than that. Yamamizu had received a pink slip from his institution, the... More

Last March, we reported on the retraction of a 2017 paper in Stem Cell Reports by Kohei Yamamizu and colleagues for widespread fabrication of figures. Turns out the problems were at least five years older than that. Yamamizu had received a pink slip from his institution, the Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA), which had put the blame for the misconduct squarely on his shoulders. (The director of the institute, Nobel winner Shinya Yamanaka, also took some of the blame in a public statement in which he said he bore “a strong responsibility for not having prevented research misconduct at our institute.”) Yamamizu has a new retraction, but this time’s a bit different. Here’s the notice for the paper, “Protein Kinase A Determines Timing of Early Differentiation through Epigenetic Regulation with G9,” which appeared in Cell Stem Cell in June 2012 (Yamanaka was not a co-author on either study).  Although the statement acknowledges the internal investigation, it doesn’t mention misconduct or name Yamamizu:

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Will the world embrace Plan S, the radical proposal to mandate open access to science papers? – Science (Tania Rabesandratana | January 2019)

Published/Released on February 03, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 24, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

How far will Plan S spread? Since the September 2018 launch of the Europe-backed program to mandate immediate open access (OA) to scientific literature, 16 funders in 13 countries have signed on. That's still far shy of Plan S's ambition: to convince the world's major research funders to require immediate... More

How far will Plan S spread? Since the September 2018 launch of the Europe-backed program to mandate immediate open access (OA) to scientific literature, 16 funders in 13 countries have signed on. That's still far shy of Plan S's ambition: to convince the world's major research funders to require immediate OA to all published papers stemming from their grants. Whether it will reach that goal depends in part on details that remain to be settled, including a cap on the author charges that funders will pay for OA publication. But the plan has gained momentum: In December 2018, China stunned many by expressing strong support for Plan S. This month, a national funding agency in Africa is expected to join, possibly followed by a second U.S. funder. Others around the world are considering whether to sign on. Plan S, scheduled to take effect on 1 January 2020, has drawn support from many scientists, who welcome a shake-up of a publishing system that can generate large profits while keeping taxpayer-funded research results behind paywalls. But publishers (including AAAS, which publishes Science) are concerned, and some scientists worry that Plan S could restrict their choices.

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Cloning monkeys for research puts humans on a slippery ethical slope – The Conversation (David Hunter | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 17, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Scientists have many tools at their disposal to study, manipulate and copy genes. [colored_box]Now it appears researchers at the Institute of Neuroscience in Shanghai, China, have combined techniques to produce a world first: gene edited, cloned macaque monkeys (Macaca fascicularis). . Qiang Sun, a senior researcher in... More

Scientists have many tools at their disposal to study, manipulate and copy genes. [colored_box]Now it appears researchers at the Institute of Neuroscience in Shanghai, China, have combined techniques to produce a world first: gene edited, cloned macaque monkeys (Macaca fascicularis). . Qiang Sun, a senior researcher in the project and Director of ION’s Nonhuman Primate Research Facility explains: .

We believe that this approach of cloning gene-edited monkeys could be used to generate a variety of monkey models for gene-based diseases, including many brain diseases, as well as immune and metabolic disorders and cancer. .

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(US) Is it time to revise the definition of research misconduct? (Papers: David B. Resnik | February 2019)

Published/Released on February 01, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 9, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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American scientist played more active role in ‘CRISPR babies’ project than previously known – STAT (Jane Qiu | January 2019)

BEIJING — An American scientist at Rice University was far more involved in the widely condemned “CRISPR babies” experiment than has previously been disclosed. Most notably, STAT has learned that Rice biophysicist Michael Deem was named as the senior author on... More

BEIJING — An American scientist at Rice University was far more involved in the widely condemned “CRISPR babies” experiment than has previously been disclosed. Most notably, STAT has learned that Rice biophysicist Michael Deem was named as the senior author on a paper about the work that was submitted to Nature in late November.

Deem’s prominent authorship indicates that a respected American researcher played an instrumental role in the controversial project, which sparked a worldwide furor. His involvement could have encouraged volunteers to join the experiment and lent credibility to He Jiankui, the Chinese scientist who led the work.

Emails provided to STAT show that Deem was listed as the last author — which, in the life sciences, is typically reserved for the senior researcher who oversees a study. The paper, titled “Birth of twins after genome editing for HIV resistance,” has another nine contributors, including He as the first author, where the person who makes the most hands-on contribution is credited.

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(US) A new NIH rule won’t be enough to make clinical research more inclusive – STAT (Louise Aronson | January 2019)

A quiet but revolutionary new national health policy goes into effect this week, ushering in changes that could lead to important medical discoveries that benefit most Americans. There’s just one problem. Implementing the change will require that our country’s health researchers make some fundamental changes in how they... More

A quiet but revolutionary new national health policy goes into effect this week, ushering in changes that could lead to important medical discoveries that benefit most Americans. There’s just one problem. Implementing the change will require that our country’s health researchers make some fundamental changes in how they do business.

[colored_box]Under the National Institutes of Health’s new Inclusion Across the Lifespan policy, federally supported medical research must include patients of all relevant ages or explain their exclusion. Since most studies already include adults, and a mandate to include children has existed since 1998, the novelty in this policy is the stipulation that clinical research include people age 65 and older. .

That’s a big group. It currently includes both Donald Trump and Nancy Pelosi, Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Clarence Thomas, as well as the 50 million other older Americans, along with the rest of us who get lucky enough down the road to make it into elderhood. .

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Guest Post: Encouraging Data Sharing: A Small Investment for Large Potential Gain – Scholarly Kitchen (Rebecca Grant, et al | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 30, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 20, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

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Reviewer-coerced citation: Case report, update on journal policy, and suggestions for future prevention (Papers: Jonathan D Wren, et al | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 30, 2019 | Posted by Admin on June 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

A case was recently brought to the journal’s attention regarding a reviewer who had requested a large number of citations to their own papers as part of their review. After investigation of their most recent reviews, we found that in every review this reviewer requested an average of 35... More

A case was recently brought to the journal’s attention regarding a reviewer who had requested a large number of citations to their own papers as part of their review. After investigation of their most recent reviews, we found that in every review this reviewer requested an average of 35 citations be added, ∼90% of which were to their own papers and the remainder to papers that both cited them extensively and mentioned them by name in the title. The reviewer’s phrasing strongly suggested that inclusion of these citations would influence their recommendation to the editor to accept or reject the paper. The reviewer was unable to provide a satisfactory justification for these requests and Bioinformatics has therefore banned them as a reviewer. Our investigation also suggests that the reviewer has behaved similarly in reviewing for other journals. This case has alerted us to how the peer-review system is vulnerable to unethical behavior, and prompted us to clarify the journal’s policy on when it is appropriate for reviewers to request citations to their own work, and to suggest how some of the current weak points in the peer-review system can be mitigated, so that this behavior can be detected more quickly and efficiently.

Wren, J.D., Valencia, A. & Kelso, J. Reviewer-coerced citation: case report, update on journal policy and suggestions for future prevention, Bioinformatics, , btz071, https://doi.org/10.1093/bioinformatics/btz071 Publisher (Open Access): https://academic.oup.com/bioinformatics/advance-article/doi/10.1093/bioinformatics/btz071/5304360

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The picture talk project: Aboriginal community input on consent for research (Papers: Emily FM Fitzpatrick, et al | 2019)

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(US) Old emails hold new clues to Coca-Cola and CDC’s controversial relationship – CNN (Jacqueline Howard | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 29, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 3, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Private emails between employees at the Coca-Cola Co. and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been exposed in a new research paper, raising questions about just how extensive of a relationship the soda company has had with the nation's public health agency. [colored_box]The paper, published Tuesday in... More

Private emails between employees at the Coca-Cola Co. and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been exposed in a new research paper, raising questions about just how extensive of a relationship the soda company has had with the nation's public health agency. [colored_box]The paper, published Tuesday in the journal The Milbank Quarterly includes excerpts from emails and suggests that current and former Coca-Cola staff tried to influence the CDC by attempting to frame the debate around whether sugar-sweetened beverages play a role in America's obesity epidemic, as well as trying to lobby decision-makers. . The email exchanges -- obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests -- were sent between 2011 and the time the FOIA requests were made in 2016 and 2017. .

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Are scientists’ reactions to ‘CRISPR babies’ about ethics or self-governance? – STAT (Nina Frahm and Tess Doezema | January 2019)

It’s been two months since Chinese scientist He Jiankui shocked the world with the announcement that his lab had created the first genetically edited babies. Since then, much of the public furor surrounding the news has died down, even as He More

It’s been two months since Chinese scientist He Jiankui shocked the world with the announcement that his lab had created the first genetically edited babies. Since then, much of the public furor surrounding the news has died down, even as He has been fired by the Southern University of Science and Technology. There is one important takeaway from the controversy that seems to have gone overlooked in the CRISPR ethics discussion: defining the ethics of editing human life should not be left to scientists alone.

The research community widely agreed that He and his colleagues crossed an ethical line with the first inheritable genetic modification of human beings. Gene-editing experts as well as bioethicists described the transgression as being conducted by a “rogue” individual. But when leading voices such as NIH Director Francis Collins assert that He’s work “represents a deeply disturbing willingness by Dr. He and his team to flout international ethical norms,” what are they actually expressing concern about? Who determines what are the ethics of altering human life?

We believe that the alarm being sounded by the scientific community isn’t really about ethics. It’s about protecting a particular form of scientific self-governance, which the “ethics” discourse supports. What are currently treated as matters of research ethics are in fact political and social questions of fundamental human importance.

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(US) ‘Three Identical Strangers’: The high cost of experimentation without ethics – The Washington Post (Barron H. Lerner | January 2019)

On Sunday night, CNN will air “Three Identical Strangers,” a documentary about an experiment in which adopted twins and triplets were secretly separated. Viewers will probably be appalled as they learn about the emotional damage these individuals experienced as a result of their forced separation.... More

On Sunday night, CNN will air “Three Identical Strangers,” a documentary about an experiment in which adopted twins and triplets were secretly separated. Viewers will probably be appalled as they learn about the emotional damage these individuals experienced as a result of their forced separation. But this medical experiment was not exceptional: It was just one of many unethical studies in the 1950s and 1960s that used subjects as means to an end.

[colored_box]Injunctions against unethical research go back at least to the mid-19th century, when the French scientist Claude Bernard admonished his fellow investigators never to do an experiment that might harm a single person, even if the result would be highly advantageous to science and the health of others. Yet despite Bernard’s admonition, the next century was replete with experiments that put orphans, prisoners, minorities and other vulnerable populations at risk for the sake of scientific discovery. Medical progress often came at too high a human cost, something the CNN documentary exposes. .

Human experimentation surged during World War II as American scientists raced to find treatments for diseases encountered on the battlefield. This experimental enthusiasm continued into the Cold War years, as the United States competed with the Soviet Union for scientific knowledge. In both eras, a utilitarian mind-set trumped concerns about research subjects. .

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Research ethics: How to Treat People who Participate in Research – NIH (Ezekiel Emanuel, et al | nd)

[colored_box]Introduction In Alabama from the 1930s to 1970s, researchers recruited black men to participate in a study of syphilis – a terrible disease that can cause disability and death. The researchers told the men participating that they were getting medical treatment, even though they were not.... More

[colored_box]Introduction In Alabama from the 1930s to 1970s, researchers recruited black men to participate in a study of syphilis – a terrible disease that can cause disability and death. The researchers told the men participating that they were getting medical treatment, even though they were not. in fact, when the study began syphilis was untreatable. the researchers instead wanted to study what syphilis does to the body over time. after World War ii, when a treatment – penicillin – was available for syphilis, the researchers kept the men from receiving it because they wanted to study what happened as the disease got worse. What makes this study – the Tuskegee Syphilis Study – unethical? What is wrong with the way the researchers acted? . A human exercise experiment or class survey designed by a student for a science fair seems very different from the tuskegee syphilis study. however, is there anything about student studies that might raise ethical concerns? . Human subjects research is exactly what it sounds like. it is research that uses people as the subjects of experiments or studies. it can include giving people new drugs, doing tests on their blood, even having them take surveys. Researchers have a duty to treat the people they study ethically and respectfully. in particular, it is important to make sure that researchers do not exploit their subjects. Exploitation is addressed further on page 9. unfortunately, as the Tuskegee Syphilis Study shows, some people were treated. . Unfortunately, as the Tuskegee Syphilis Study shows, some people were treated horribly during research studies in the past. German and Japanese researchers, for instance, conducted terrible experiments on prisoners during World War ii. Many other incidents took place before the 1970s, when some u.s. doctors experimented on hospital patients without telling them or failed to provide medicines that would have treated potentially deadly diseases. Today, there are ethical principles for research to help ensure that people who participate are not harmed and that the scandals of the past do not occur again.these principles even apply to student research projects with humans, and they are important for you to think about as you design experiments.

Access  the brochure

TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction 3 Introduction to the 7 Principles 4 Other Important Concepts and Issues 8 Applying the Principles 10 Further Reading

Emanuel, E, Abodler, E. and Stunkel, L. (nd) Research ethics: How to Treat People who Participate in Research. US National Institutes of Health. https://bioethics.nih.gov/education/FNIH_BioethicsBrochure_WEB.PDF

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Ethics & Human Research (E&HR)

Published/Released on January 24, 2019 | Posted by Admin on January 25, 2019 | Keywords: , ,

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As China cracks down on faked drug trial data, US FDA abandons disclosure rule – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | October 2018)

Published/Released on January 23, 2019 | Posted by Admin on January 5, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

The FDA has walked away from a 2010 rule that would have forced drug makers to disclose fabricated data to regulators. As Bloomberg Law reported last week, the FDA has withdrawn the proposed rule, “Reporting Information Regarding Falsification of Data,” which would

require sponsors to report information indicating that... More

The FDA has walked away from a 2010 rule that would have forced drug makers to disclose fabricated data to regulators. As Bloomberg Law reported last week, the FDA has withdrawn the proposed rule, “Reporting Information Regarding Falsification of Data,” which would

require sponsors to report information indicating that any person has, or may have, engaged in the falsification of data in the course of reporting study results, or in the course of proposing, designing, performing, recording, supervising, or reviewing studies that involve human subjects or animal subjects conducted by or on behalf of a sponsor or relied on by a sponsor. A sponsor would be required to report this information to the appropriate FDA center promptly, but no later than 45 calendar days after the sponsor becomes aware of the information. This proposal is necessary because ambiguity in the current reporting scheme has caused confusion among sponsors. The proposed rule is intended to help ensure the validity of data that the agency receives in support of applications and petitions for FDA product approvals and authorization of certain labeling claims and to protect research subjects.

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Singapore legal challenge ‘will chill academic freedom’ – Times Higher Education (Ellie Bothwell | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 23, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 27, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Academics issue warning after news story including critical comments about country’s top universities is removed

Academics fear that the removal of an online article that included critical comments about the country’s two leading universities following a legal challenge will have a chilling effect on... More

Academics issue warning after news story including critical comments about country’s top universities is removed

Academics fear that the removal of an online article that included critical comments about the country’s two leading universities following a legal challenge will have a chilling effect on freedom of expression. The story, “Opaque policies, xation with KPIs, rankings: why arts and humanities academics quit NUS, NTU”, which was published by the online newspaper Today, included interviews with several academics who had left or were planning to leave the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. According to the article, scholars claimed that the universities failed to retain talented academics because of their “incessant pursuit of rankings and the relative lack of academic freedom when it comes to certain projects or research initiatives”.

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(Japan) Researcher at Japan stem cell institute falsified nearly all images in 2017 paper – Retraction Watch (Victoria Stern | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 23, 2019 | Posted by Admin on May 25, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

An investigation by Kyoto University in Japan has found a researcher guilty of falsifying all but one of the figures in a 2017 stem cell paper. Yesterday, Kyoto University announced that the paper’s first author, Kohei Yamamizu, had fabricated and falsified data... More

An investigation by Kyoto University in Japan has found a researcher guilty of falsifying all but one of the figures in a 2017 stem cell paper. Yesterday, Kyoto University announced that the paper’s first author, Kohei Yamamizu, had fabricated and falsified data in the Stem Cell Reports paper. According to the investigation report, none of the other authors were involved in the data manipulation. Yamamizu works at the Center for iPS cell Research and Application (CiRA) at Kyoto University, directed by Shinya Yamanaka, a Nobel Prize winner for his pioneering work in stem cell biology.

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Scientist Who Used Gene Editing On Human Embryos Likely To Face Criminal Charges In China – KHN (January 2019)

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CRISPR-baby scientist fired by university – Nature (David Cyranoski | January 2019)

Investigation by Chinese authorities finds He Jiankui broke national regulations in his controversial work on gene-edited babies

The scientist who announced last year that he had produced the world’s first gene-edited babies has been... More

Investigation by Chinese authorities finds He Jiankui broke national regulations in his controversial work on gene-edited babies

The scientist who announced last year that he had produced the world’s first gene-edited babies has been fired by his university. The decision, announced on 21 January by the Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen, in China’s Guandong province, follows an investigation into He Jiankui’s work by provincial health authorities. A probe by the Guangdong health ministry found that He broke national regulations against using gene-editing for reproductive purposes, Chinese state media agency Xinhua reported on 21 January.

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(US) ‘It’s time for systemic change’: Scientific leaders urge new efforts to curb sexual harassment in the field – STAT (Megan Thielking | September 2018)

Leaders of one of the nation’s most prominent scientific groups are calling for the research community to “act with urgency” to address sexual and gender-based harassment in the field.

“It’s time for systemic change,” three leaders of the American Association for the Advancement of Science wrote in... More

Leaders of one of the nation’s most prominent scientific groups are calling for the research community to “act with urgency” to address sexual and gender-based harassment in the field.

“It’s time for systemic change,” three leaders of the American Association for the Advancement of Science wrote in an editorial published Thursday in Science.

The editorial — penned by AAAS president Dr. Margaret Hamburg, chair of the board Susan Hockfield, and president-elect Steven Chu — follows on the heels of a new policy on harassment adopted by the organization last weekend. That policy allows the organization to revoke the membership of elected fellows in cases of proven scientific misconduct or serious breaches of professional ethics. The policy also makes it clear: Sexual and gender-based harassment violate those standards and are grounds for removal.

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Research ethics now a strategic priority for doctoral schools – University World News ( Brendan O’Malley | January 2019)

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Ask the patients about the benefits and the risks – The Ethics Blog (Pär Segerdah | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 16, 2019 | Posted by Admin on January 31, 2019 | Keywords: , ,

Almost no medications are without risks of side effects. When new drugs are approved, decision makers must balance risks and benefits. To make the balancing, they use results from clinical trials where the drugs are tested on patients to determine (among other things) efficacy and side effects. [colored_box]But how do... More

Almost no medications are without risks of side effects. When new drugs are approved, decision makers must balance risks and benefits. To make the balancing, they use results from clinical trials where the drugs are tested on patients to determine (among other things) efficacy and side effects. [colored_box]But how do you balance risks and benefits? Is the balancing completely objective, so that all that is needed is results from clinical trials? Or can risks and benefits be valued differently? . It has been noted that decision makers can value risks and benefits differently from patients. Therefore, results merely from clinical trials do not suffice. Decision makers also need to understand how the patients themselves value the risks and the benefits associated with treatments of their disease. The patients need to be asked about their preferences. . Karin Schölin Bywall is a PhD student at CRB. She plans to carry out preference studies with patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. The task is complex, since risks and benefits are multidimensional. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease with several symptoms, such as pain, stiffness, fatigue, fever, weakness, deformity, malaise, weight loss and depression. Medications can be variously effective on different symptoms, while they can have a range of side effects. Which positive effect on which symptom is sufficiently important for the patients to outweigh a certain level of one of the side effects? .

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A Beginner’s Guide to the Peer Review System – GradHacker (Carolyn Trietsch | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 16, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 10, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Thinking through the Peer Review system, especially for first time writers.

I was thrilled to receive my first request to peer review a paper while working on my Ph.D. Then I realized I didn’t know how to peer review. It had never been covered in... More

Thinking through the Peer Review system, especially for first time writers.

I was thrilled to receive my first request to peer review a paper while working on my Ph.D. Then I realized I didn’t know how to peer review. It had never been covered in my classes, so I started asking around and sending emails, reaching out to my friends in other programs, but with little luck. As important as peer review is, it seems that few STEM programs actively teach students about how to navigate the peer review process and make the decisions involved, such as whether to accept or reject a paper for publication. Fortunately, this is why we have mentors. I set up a meeting with a veteran peer reviewer and journal editor who was kind enough to spend an afternoon answering my questions and sharing important takeaways gleaned over years of experience. I realized that others could benefit from this advice, and I put together the following post from our discussion (with permission, of course, though my mentor wished to remain anonymous). Here is some guidance for students, early career professionals and others who are new to the peer review system:

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An Australian university cleared a cancer researcher of misconduct. He’s now retracted six papers – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky – January 2019)

Khachigian’s research is a long and winding tale. One place to start would be in October 2009, when a paper co-authored by Khachigian — whose work at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) has been funded by millions of dollars in funding from the Australian government,... More

Khachigian’s research is a long and winding tale. One place to start would be in October 2009, when a paper co-authored by Khachigian — whose work at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) has been funded by millions of dollars in funding from the Australian government, and has led to clinical trials, although more on that later — was retracted from Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. The “corresponding author published the paper without the full consent or acknowledgement of all the researchers and would like to apologize for this error,” according to that notice. Three more papers, all from the Journal of Biological Chemistry (JBC), were retracted the following July, saying only that “This article has been withdrawn by the authors,” as was typical for the JBC for many years.

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Mentors help authors say “no” to predatory journals – Elsevier Connect (Marilynn Larkin | November 2018)

Published/Released on January 14, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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Editorial Mutiny at Elsevier Journal – Inside Higher Ed (Lindsay McKenzie | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 14, 2019 | Posted by Admin on March 18, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Following in the footsteps of linguistics journal Lingua, the editorial board of the Elsevier-owned Journal of Informetrics has resigned and launched a rival journal that will be free for all to read. The entire editorial board of the Elsevier-owned Journal of Informetrics... More

Following in the footsteps of linguistics journal Lingua, the editorial board of the Elsevier-owned Journal of Informetrics has resigned and launched a rival journal that will be free for all to read. The entire editorial board of the Elsevier-owned Journal of Informetrics resigned Thursday in protest over high open-access fees, restricted access to citation data and commercial control of scholarly work. Today, the same team is launching a new fully open-access journal called Quantitative Science Studies. The journal will be for and by the academic community and will be owned by the International Society for Scientometrics and Informetrics (ISSI). It will be published jointly with MIT Press. The editorial board of the Journal of Informetrics said in a statement that they were unanimous in their decision to quit. They contend that scholarly journals should be owned by the scholarly community rather than by commercial publishers, should be open access under fair principles, and publishers should make citation data freely available.

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Even potential participants of a research integrity conference commit plagiarism, organizers learn – Retraction Watch (Lex Bouter | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 10, 2019 | Posted by Admin on January 11, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

One would hope that researchers submitting abstracts for a meeting on research integrity would be less likely to commit research misconduct. But if the experience of the 6th World Conference on Research Integrity is any indication, that may not be the case. Here, the co-organizers of the conference —... More

One would hope that researchers submitting abstracts for a meeting on research integrity would be less likely to commit research misconduct. But if the experience of the 6th World Conference on Research Integrity is any indication, that may not be the case. Here, the co-organizers of the conference — Lex Bouter, Daniel Barr, and Mai Har Sham — explain. [colored_box]Recently the 430 abstracts submitted for the 6th World Conference on Research Integrity (WCRI) were peer reviewed. After an alarming report of apparent plagiarism from one of the 30 reviewers, text similarity checking was conducted on all the abstracts received using Turnitin. This identified 12 suspected cases of plagiarism and 18 suspected cases of self-plagiarism. Abstracts with a Turnitin Similarity Index above 30% (ranging from 37% to 94%) were further assessed and labelled as potential self-plagiarism if overlapping texts had at least one author in common. . We did not investigate the 18 cases of suspected self-plagiarism further, but decided to exclude them from oral presentation and to consider them as eligible for poster presentation only. In the call for abstracts we did not say that submissions should contain work that had not been presented or published before. Furthermore, the abstract form did not allow for references to earlier presentations or publications. For future conferences we will explicitly ask whether the work is novel and to provide references to earlier presentations or publications. We do not believe that novelty is an absolute condition for eligibility as there may be good reasons to present important work to different audiences or to present important work that has recently been published but might have escaped being noticed.

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Cribbing from Kribbe: UK criminology prof loses four papers for plagiarism – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 09, 2019 | Posted by Admin on January 13, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

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

Published/Released on January 09, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 20, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , , ,

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. [colored_box]The paper, “Limited individual attention and online virality of low-quality information,” presented an argument for why bogus facts seem to gain so much... More

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. [colored_box]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. . As they reported: .

Our main finding is that survival of the fittest is far from a foregone conclusion where information is concerned. .

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Blowback Against a Hoax – Inside Higher Ed (Colleen Flaherty | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 08, 2019 | Posted by Admin on January 11, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Author of a recent academic scam faces disciplinary action by Portland State, for failing to alert his research review board before hoodwinking journal editors with outrageous articles. Many say he's guilty of bad form, but did he commit misconduct? [colored_box]A hoax revealing that... More

Author of a recent academic scam faces disciplinary action by Portland State, for failing to alert his research review board before hoodwinking journal editors with outrageous articles. Many say he's guilty of bad form, but did he commit misconduct? [colored_box]A hoax revealing that academic journals had accepted fake papers on topics from canine “rape culture” in dog parks to “fat bodybuilding” to an adaption of Mein Kampf met with applause and scorn in the fall. Fans of the project tended to agree with the hoaxers that critical studies scholars will validate anything aligned with their politics. Critics said that the researchers acted in bad faith, wasting editors’ and reviewers’ time and very publicly besmirching academe in the process: the story was covered by nearly every major news outlet. . Now the controversy has flared up again, with news that one of the project’s authors faces disciplinary action at his home institution. Peter Boghossian, an assistant professor of philosophy at Portland State University and the only one of three researchers on the project to hold a full-time academic position, was found by his institutional review board to have committed research misconduct. Specifically, he failed to secure its approval before proceeding with research on human subjects -- in this case, the journal editors and reviewers he was tricking with his absurd but seemingly well-researched papers. Some seven of 20 were published in gender studies and other journals. Seven were rejected. Others were pending before the spoof was uncovered. . “An IRB protocol application should have been submitted to the Office of Research Integrity,” reads a determination letter from Portland state’s IRB dated last month. “University policy requires that all research involving human subjects conducted by faculty, other employees and students [on campus] must have prior review and approval by the IRB.” .

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(US) Temple Will Pay $5.5M to Settle Suits Over False Rankings Data – Inside Higher ED (Scott Jaschik | January 2019

Published/Released on January 07, 2019 | Posted by Admin on January 22, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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Open Access, Academic Freedom, and the Spectrum of Coercive Power – Scholarly Kitchen (Rick Anderson | November 2018)

Published/Released on January 05, 2019 | Posted by Admin on April 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

I’m on the record as having suggested that institutional, funder-imposed, and governmental open access (OA) mandates have troubling implications for academic freedom, given that academic freedom includes — according to the statement promulgated by the American Association of University Professors —... More

I’m on the record as having suggested that institutional, funder-imposed, and governmental open access (OA) mandates have troubling implications for academic freedom, given that academic freedom includes — according to the statement promulgated by the American Association of University Professors — “full freedom… in publication.”* You can’t simultaneously enjoy “full freedom in publication” and operate under a regime that requires you to publish in very specific ways — especially when those modes of publication require you to give up important rights granted to you by law. When I’ve raised these concerns in the past, I’ve often been asked (usually by people who are strongly in favor of institutional, funder-based, and/or governmental OA mandates) whether I have the same concerns about a journal’s or publisher’s requirement that authors relinquish copyright in return for the their publishing services. After all, in both cases the author is being asked to relinquish control over her work in return for something else she wants. Aren’t journal publishers being just as coercive when they require copyright transfer as funders are when they require OA publication with a CC BY license? This question has usually come in relatively constraining forums like Twitter and online commenting threads, where it can be tough to respond effectively to a question this complex. Hence this posting, in which I’ll try to explain my thinking on this issue, which I think is a very important one. The first crucial thing to bear in mind is that when dealing with questions of freedom and coercion generally, we are not dealing with a binary issue. There’s no scenario available to faculty authors that offers either perfect freedom or absolute constraint. Even at their most free, academic authors are still generally expected by their peers to publish in quality scholarly journals, and their careers are hobbled when they fail to do so; even under the most constraining scenarios, authors usually still have some degree of choice between publishing venues (although some emerging models, like Plan S, would have particularly severe effects on authors’ freedom to choose). So this isn’t about choosing between absolute freedom and total coercion; the issue is how best to balance the tradition of academic freedom with the rights of various kinds of institutions to impose requirements on authors in return for such considerations as employment, funding, or publishing services. As it does in so many situations where different parties’ rights come into conflict, the challenge boils down to trying to find the right balance between the legitimate rights of individuals and an obligation to the collective good — or at least, the “collective good” as understood by people who have power over authors.

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Human genome editing: ask whether, not how – Nature (J. Benjamin Hurlbut | January 2019)

Published/Released on January 02, 2019 | Posted by Admin on February 12, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

The scientific community’s response to the CRISPR twins should not pre-empt broader discussion across society, warns J. Benjamin Hurlbut

Leaders in the scientific community are urgently seeking to set international standards for producing genetically modified humans. They are reacting to November’s announcement by Chinese... More

The scientific community’s response to the CRISPR twins should not pre-empt broader discussion across society, warns J. Benjamin Hurlbut

Leaders in the scientific community are urgently seeking to set international standards for producing genetically modified humans. They are reacting to November’s announcement by Chinese scientist He Jiankui, who claims that twin girls have been born carrying gene-editing changes He made when they were embryos. In calling for standards for producing such ‘CRISPR-edited’ babies, these leaders have shunted aside a crucial and as-yet-unanswered question: whether it is (or can ever be) acceptable to genetically engineer children by introducing changes that they will pass on to their own offspring. That question belongs not to science, but to all of humanity. We do not yet understand what making heritable genetic alterations will mean for our fundamental relationships — parent to child, physician to patient, state to citizen and society to its members. In 2015, the dozen bioethicists and scientists who organized the first International Summit on Human Gene Editing agreed. They said it was irresponsible to proceed with heritable human genetic alteration until two conditions were met: one, that safety and efficacy had been demonstrated; and two, that there was “broad societal consensus” about the appropriateness of proceeding.

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Journal retracts paper by controversial Australian journalist – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 29, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 30, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

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The impact on authors and editors of introducing Data Availability Statements at Nature journals ( Papers: Rebecca Grant & Iain Hrynaszkiewicz | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 27, 2018 | Posted by Admin on April 4, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Abstract

This article describes the adoption of a standard policy for the inclusion of data availability statements in all research articles published at the Nature family of journals, and the subsequent research which assessed the impacts that these policies had on authors, editors,... More

Abstract

This article describes the adoption of a standard policy for the inclusion of data availability statements in all research articles published at the Nature family of journals, and the subsequent research which assessed the impacts that these policies had on authors, editors, and the availability of datasets. The key findings of this research project include the determination of average and median times required to add a data availability statement to an article; and a correlation between the way researchers make their data available, and the time required to add a data availability statement.

Grant, R. & Hrynaszkiewicz, I. (2018)  The impact on authors and editors of introducing Data Availability Statements at Nature journals. International Journal of Digital Curation. 13(1) DOI: https://doi.org/10.2218/ijdc.v13i1.614 Publisher: http://www.ijdc.net/article/view/614

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More science than you think is retracted. Even more should be – The Washington Post (Adam Marcus and Ivan Oransky | December 2018)

Adam Marcus, the managing editor of Gastroenterology & Endoscopy News, and Ivan Oransky, distinguished writer in residence at New York University’s Arthur Carter Journalism Institute and vice president for editorial at Medscape, are co-founders of Retraction Watch.

The fall from grace wasn’t exactly swift, but it... More

Adam Marcus, the managing editor of Gastroenterology & Endoscopy News, and Ivan Oransky, distinguished writer in residence at New York University’s Arthur Carter Journalism Institute and vice president for editorial at Medscape, are co-founders of Retraction Watch.

The fall from grace wasn’t exactly swift, but it was stunning. Among stem cell researchers, Piero Anversa’s work trying to regrow the human heart in the 1990s and 2000s was legendary. That was then. In October, his former institutions, Harvard Medical School and its affiliate Brigham and Women’s Hospital, asked journals to retract 31 of his lab’s papers. That followed an agreement last year by the Brigham and other hospitals to pay the government $10 million to settle claims that Anversa and a colleague used bogus data to obtain their grant funding.

As dramatic as the Anversa case is, he is far from alone. This month, Anversa’s lab saw 13 papers retracted, but even if all journals honor the retraction requests, he won’t crack the top 10 for scientists who’ve had their articles pulled from the literature. Neither does Cornell University’s Brian Wansink, the food marketing researcher — and former media fixture — who experienced a similar fall over the past few years. The dubious honor for most retractions goes to Yoshitaka Fujii, a Japanese anesthesiologist who fabricated his findings in at least 183 papers, according to a 2012 investigation launched by journal editors and Japanese universities.

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The Three Dilemmas of Data Gathering – Knowledge (Annet Aris | December 2017)

Published/Released on December 20, 2018 | Posted by Admin on January 30, 2018 | Keywords: , , , ,

What companies do with customer data needs to be considered more closely.

“Alexa, order more tissues.” “Siri, set a reminder to phone the doctor.” “OK Google, turn on the light in the hallway upstairs.” After an initial phase of euphoria about how the digital world improves... More

What companies do with customer data needs to be considered more closely.

“Alexa, order more tissues.” “Siri, set a reminder to phone the doctor.” “OK Google, turn on the light in the hallway upstairs.” After an initial phase of euphoria about how the digital world improves our daily life with virtual assistants, among other gadgets and services, slowly but surely, we're coming firmly back to earth. Post-honeymoon, the breakneck speed of digital development has created an increasing number of concerns. The societal debate is now focused, in particular, on our right to privacy and the increasing market power of the digital giants. [colored_box]European politicians have meanwhile woken up. After a somewhat premature Dutch law limiting the cookies companies could install on computers, the European Union will implement the General Data Protection Regulation in 2018, providing European citizens with more transparency and control of their own data. . The activities of Google, Facebook and the rest of the Big Five are also now pursued critically with regard to abuse on several fronts, including market power, payment of taxes and news distribution, resulting in probes and fines by the EU and, in the United States, executives appearing before Congress. .

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Which kind of peer review is best for catching fraud? – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 20, 2018 | Posted by Admin on January 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Is peer review a good way to weed out problematic papers? And if it is, which kinds of peer review? In a new paper in Scientometrics, Willem Halffman, of Radboud University, and Serge Horbach, of Radboud University and Leiden University, used our database of retractions to... More

Is peer review a good way to weed out problematic papers? And if it is, which kinds of peer review? In a new paper in Scientometrics, Willem Halffman, of Radboud University, and Serge Horbach, of Radboud University and Leiden University, used our database of retractions to try to find out. We asked them several questions about the new work. Retraction Watch (RW): You write that “journals’ use of peer review to identify fraudulent research is highly contentious.” Can you explain what you mean? Willem Halffman and Serge Horbach (WH and SH): The precise role of the peer review system has long been discussed. Two expectations of the system are more or less universally accepted: peer review is supposed to help improve the quality of a submitted manuscript and it is expected to distinguish between high and low quality work. However, there are quite a few expectations of the peer review system that are not as widely shared. These include expectations such as granting equal and fair opportunities to all authors (regardless of gender, nationality etc.), providing a hierarchy of the most significant published results, or detecting errors or outright fraud in submitted papers. Some claim that peer review cannot be expected to perform such functions, as it was never designed nor meant to do so. Others point out that the peer review and editorial system are increasingly remodelled to detect fraud, supported by recent developments such as text similarity scanners, image manipulation scanners or the establishment of editorial ‘integrity czars’. In addition, when new cases of misconduct come to light, the peer review system is often blamed for not filtering out the fraudulent research before it could enter the academic literature. Researchers talk about peer review as if we all know precisely what it is and what it is for, but there is actually quite some variation hidden under that general term.

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The Ethical Quandary of Human Infection Studies – Undark (Linda Nordling | November 2018)

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RePAIR consensus guidelines: Responsibilities of Publishers, Agencies, Institutions, and Researchers in protecting the integrity of the research record (Papers: Collaborative Working Group from the conference “Keeping the Pool Clean… | December 2018)

Abstract The progression of research and scholarly inquiry does not occur in isolation and is wholly dependent on accurate reporting of methods and results, and successful replication of prior work. Without mechanisms to correct the literature, much time and money is wasted on research based on... More

Abstract The progression of research and scholarly inquiry does not occur in isolation and is wholly dependent on accurate reporting of methods and results, and successful replication of prior work. Without mechanisms to correct the literature, much time and money is wasted on research based on a crumbling foundation. These guidelines serve to outline the respective responsibilities of researchers, institutions, agencies, and publishers or editors in maintaining the integrity of the research record. Delineating these complementary roles and proposing solutions for common barriers provide a foundation for best practices. Keywords Research integrity, Retractions, Researchers, Publishers, Editors, Agencies, Institutions, Research misconduct, International, Communication

Research Integrity and Peer Review - RePAIR consensus guidelines: Responsibilities of Publishers, Agencies, Institutions, and Researchers in protecting the integrity of the research record. Research Integrity and Peer Review 2018, 3:15 https://doi.org/10.1186/s41073-018-0055-1 Publisher (Open Access): https://researchintegrityjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s41073-018-0055-1

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Oh, What A Tangled Web! Citation Network Underscores Editorial Conflicts of Interest – Scholarly Kitchen (Phil Davis | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 18, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 18, 2018 | Keywords: , , , ,

The separation of powers is as important in academic publishing as it is in government.

If readers are to trust the integrity of the editorial and peer review process, editors need to be insulated from the business of publishing, which often means keeping them... More

The separation of powers is as important in academic publishing as it is in government.

If readers are to trust the integrity of the editorial and peer review process, editors need to be insulated from the business of publishing, which often means keeping them away from their colleagues in marketing, sales, and advertising. So important is the separation of powers that some publishers physically separate editorial offices from business operations and place them in different cities. If they can’t separate these divisions physically, they will often develop strong internal policies to minimize influence. For example, PLOS does not disclose to the editor whether a submitting author has applied for article processing fee assistance when reviewing a manuscript. Similarly, many publishers have explicit rules that prevent editors from handling their own paper or the papers of authors very closely associated with them. None of these separations of roles and powers guarantee that the decision to publish is entirely free of bias, but they do demonstrate a seriousness in building an institution, a process, and a product that can be trusted.

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Is it time for a new classification system for scientific misconduct? – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | December 2018)

Are current classification systems for research misconduct adequate? Toshio Kuroki — special advisor to the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and professor emeritus at the University of Tokyo and Gifu University — thinks the answer is no. In a new paper in Accountability in Research,... More

Are current classification systems for research misconduct adequate? Toshio Kuroki — special advisor to the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and professor emeritus at the University of Tokyo and Gifu University — thinks the answer is no. In a new paper in Accountability in Research, Kuroki — who has published on research misconduct before — suggests a new classification system. We asked him a few questions about his proposal. The answers are lightly edited for clarity. Retraction Watch (RW): Why did you feel that a new classification of misconduct was necessary? Toshio Kuroki (TK): The STAP affair, starring Haruko Obokata, was my inspiration to become a “misconductologist.” In 2016, I published a book in Japanese on research misconduct for the general public.

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China introduces ‘social’ punishments for scientific misconduct – Nature (David Cyranoski | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 14, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 16, 2018 | Keywords: , , , ,

Offending researchers could face restrictions on jobs, loans and business opportunities under a system tied to the controversial social credit policy.

Researchers in China who commit scientific misconduct could soon be prevented from getting a bank loan, running a company or applying for a... More

Offending researchers could face restrictions on jobs, loans and business opportunities under a system tied to the controversial social credit policy.

Researchers in China who commit scientific misconduct could soon be prevented from getting a bank loan, running a company or applying for a public-service job. The government has announced an extensive punishment system that could have significant consequences for offenders — far beyond their academic careers. [colored_box]Under the new policy, dozens of government agencies will have the power to hand out penalties to those caught committing major scientific misconduct, a role previously performed by the science ministry or universities. Errant researchers could also face punishments that have nothing to do with research, such as restrictions on jobs outside academia, as well as existing misconduct penalties, such as losing grants and awards. . “Almost all aspects of daily life for the guilty scientists could be affected,” says Chen Bikun, who studies scientific evaluation systems at Nanjing University of Science and Technology. .

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AHRECS is calling for expressions of interest: Unpaid internship

Published/Released on December 14, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 14, 2018 | Keywords:

Expressions of interest are sought for a two month unpaid internship with the Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS). Intern candidates must have a demonstrated interest in human research ethics and/or research integrity, have completed a HDR qualification, be an excellent communicator and have a demonstrated... More

Expressions of interest are sought for a two month unpaid internship with the Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS). Intern candidates must have a demonstrated interest in human research ethics and/or research integrity, have completed a HDR qualification, be an excellent communicator and have a demonstrated work ethic. In addition to being involved in background work, literature searches and drafting documents, the internship will provide a valuable capacity building and professional development opportunity with a growing consultancy firm under the supervision of our senior consultants. The unpaid role will require about a 35-hour commitment to be completed over two months. At the end of the two months, the intern and the AHRECS team will decide together whether to start another two month term. Work will be conducted remotely and online, with meetings at an agreed time somewhere between 8am and 10pm AEST. Expressions of interest must be submitted in writing by 15 January 2019 to internship@ahrecs.com and must be accompanied with two relevant professional/academic/research references. The expressions of interest will be considered by the AHRECS senior consultants and shortlisted candidates may be interviewed via video conference. Less

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Of Parachutes and Participant Protection: Moving Beyond Quality to Advance Effective Research Ethics Oversight (Papers: Holly Fernandez Lynch, et al | December 2018)

Abstract [colored_box]There are several reasons to believe that Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) and Human Research Protection Programs (HRPPs) contribute to ethical research and the protection of research participants, but there are also important reasons to interrogate this belief. Determining whether IRBs and HRPPs “work” requires empirical... More

Abstract [colored_box]There are several reasons to believe that Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) and Human Research Protection Programs (HRPPs) contribute to ethical research and the protection of research participants, but there are also important reasons to interrogate this belief. Determining whether IRBs and HRPPs “work” requires empirical evaluation of whether and how well they actually achieve what they were designed to do. In other words, it is critical to examine their outcomes and not only their procedures and structures. In this response to Tsan, we argue that the concept of IRB and HRPP quality entails three dimensions: (1) effectiveness, (2) procedures and structures likely to promote effectiveness, and (3) features unrelated to effectiveness but nonetheless essential, such as efficiency, fairness, and proportionality. Because not all types of quality necessarily guarantee or entail effectiveness, we suggest that broad quality assessments, including such features as regulatory compliance and other procedural measures suggested by Tsan, are unhelpful as the first step in evaluating IRBs and HRPPs. Instead, we must start with outcomes relevant to effectiveness. To do this, we launched the Consortium to Advance Effective Research Ethics Oversight (AEREO), with a mission to define and specify ways to measure relevant outcomes for research ethics oversight, empirically evaluate whether those outcomes are achieved, test new approaches to achieving them, and ultimately, develop and implement empirically-based policy and practice to advance IRB and HRPP effectiveness. We describe several anticipated AEREO projects and call for collaboration between various stakeholders to more meaningfully evaluate IRB and HRPPs. Keywords Institutional Review Board, research ethics oversight, effectiveness, quality, empirical evaluation

Lynch, H. F., Nicholls, S., Meyer, M. N., & Taylor, H. A. (2018). Of Parachutes and Participant Protection: Moving Beyond Quality to Advance Effective Research Ethics Oversight. Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics. https://doi.org/10.1177/1556264618812625 Publisher: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1556264618812625#articleCitationDownloadContainer

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Amid ethics outcry, should journals publish the ‘CRISPR babies’ paper? – STAT (Adam Marcus | December 2018)

Like researchers everywhere, He Jiankui — the scientist in China who claims to have used CRISPR to edit embryos to create babies protected from HIV — is eager to publish scientific papers. It is, after all, a publish-or-perish world — although in He’s case, his fate... More

Like researchers everywhere, He Jiankui — the scientist in China who claims to have used CRISPR to edit embryos to create babies protected from HIV — is eager to publish scientific papers. It is, after all, a publish-or-perish world — although in He’s case, his fate at home may rest more with what the Chinese government thinks of his behavior than what a peer reviewer says about his work.

[colored_box]As STAT reported Monday, He shopped around a manuscript earlier this fall about using CRISPR to edit genes for a different purpose — to prevent an inherited condition that causes sky-high cholesterol levels — but it was rejected because of ethical and scientific shortcomings. And two weeks ago, in the face of withering criticism over his lack of transparency, He told the International Summit on Human Genome Editing in Hong Kong that he had submitted a paper on the “CRISPR babies” work to a journal. .

Given the maelstrom surrounding He’s claims, however, should any journals even consider papers from him? And if they do, what should they keep in mind? .

Jeremy Berg, editor of Science, told STAT that while he could not comment on whether the paper had been submitted to his journal, “given the numerous ethical issues with this situation as presented, we would be extremely unlikely to consider it." .

Howard Bauchner, the editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association, wouldn’t comment on the possibility of a submission by He either, but said, “I believe articles should be reviewed and not judged based upon what is written in the media.”.

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How Do You Publish the Work of a Scientific Villain? – WIRED (Megan Molteni | December 2018)

HOW DO YOU handle the data of a scientist who violates all the norms of his field? Who breaches the trust of a community that spans the entire globe? Who shows a casual disregard for the fate of the whole... More

HOW DO YOU handle the data of a scientist who violates all the norms of his field? Who breaches the trust of a community that spans the entire globe? Who shows a casual disregard for the fate of the whole human species? On the one hand, you might want to learn from such a person’s work; to have a full and open dissection of everything that went wrong. Because, spoiler, there was a lot that went wrong in the case in question. But rewarding such “abhorrent” behavior, as one scientist put it, with a publication—the currency of the scientific world—would send a message that ethical rules only exist to be broken.

This is the precarious situation in which we find ourselves today, as scientists hash out the next chapter of the human gene-editing scandal that erupted two weeks ago, when the Chinese scientist He Jiankui revealed that for the last two years he has been working in secret to produce the world’s first Crispr-edited babies. Scientists denounced the work with near-unanimous condemnation, citing its technical failures as well as its deep breaches of ethical (and possibly legal) lines. What’s much less certain is what should happen to the work, now that it’s been done.

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What These Medical Journals Don’t Reveal: Top Doctors’ Ties to Industry – New York Times (Charles Ornstein and Katie Thomas | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 08, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 10, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

One is dean of Yale’s medical school. Another is the director of a cancer center in Texas. A third is the next president of the most prominent society of cancer doctors.

These leading medical figures are among dozens of doctors who have failed in recent years... More

One is dean of Yale’s medical school. Another is the director of a cancer center in Texas. A third is the next president of the most prominent society of cancer doctors.

These leading medical figures are among dozens of doctors who have failed in recent years to report their financial relationships with pharmaceutical and health care companies when their studies are published in medical journals, according to a review by The New York Times and ProPublica and data from other recent research.

Dr. Howard A. “Skip” Burris III, the president-elect of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, for instance, declared that he had no conflicts of interest in more than 50 journal articles in recent years, including in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine.

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Friday arvo funny: Peer review

Published/Released on December 07, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 7, 2018 | Keywords: ,

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Why Cell Systems is publishing Peer Reviews – Crosstalk (Carly Britton | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 07, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 29, 2018 | Keywords: , , , ,

Quincey Justman's first editorial as Editor-in-Chief of Cell Systems highlights a new type of article: the Peer Review, which showcases the contributions to science that peer reviewers make every day. The Peer Review is separate from, but complementary to, broader forthcoming experiments with... More

Quincey Justman's first editorial as Editor-in-Chief of Cell Systems highlights a new type of article: the Peer Review, which showcases the contributions to science that peer reviewers make every day. The Peer Review is separate from, but complementary to, broader forthcoming experiments with transparent peer review conducted by Molecular Cell, Developmental Cell, and Cell Systems. The first Peer Review from Cell Systems, by John Doyle, Noah Olsman, and Fangzhou Xiao, evaluates the research article "Cytoplasmic Amplification of Transcriptional Noise Generates Substantial Cell-to-Cell Variability," by Maike Hansen, Leor Weinberger, and their colleagues. Both pieces were published in the October 24 issue of Cell Systems. Quincey sat down with Cell Press Press Officer Carly Britton to answer some questions about why she wanted to publish this Peer Review.

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Learning lessons from the Paolo Macchiarini case – Horizons (Matthias Egger | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 06, 2018 | Posted by Admin on February 23, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

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Funder open access platforms – a welcome innovation? – LSE Impact Blog (Tony Ross-Hellauer, et al | July 2018)

Published/Released on December 04, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 15, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Funding organisations commissioning their own open access publishing platforms is a relatively recent development in the OA environment, with the European Commission following the Wellcome Trust and the Gates Foundation in financing such an initiative. But in what ways, for better or worse, do these new platforms disrupt... More

Funding organisations commissioning their own open access publishing platforms is a relatively recent development in the OA environment, with the European Commission following the Wellcome Trust and the Gates Foundation in financing such an initiative. But in what ways, for better or worse, do these new platforms disrupt or complement the scholarly communications landscape? Tony Ross-Hellauer, Birgit Schmidt and Bianca Kramer examine the ethical, organisational, and economic strengths and weaknesses of funder OA platforms to scope the opportunities and threats they present in the transition to OA. While they may help to increase OA uptake, control costs, and lower the administrative burden on researchers, possible unintended consequences include conflicts of interest, difficulties of scale, or potential vendor lock-in.

[colored_box]In the age of open access (OA), research funding organisations have taken a more active interest in academic publishing. They are increasingly mandating their beneficiaries to publish OA, supporting infrastructures and directly funding publishing (via article processing charges). .

A step-change in this engagement is the recent phenomenon of OA publishing platforms commissioned by funding organisations. Examples include those of the Wellcome Trust and the Gates Foundation, as well as recently announced initiatives from public funders like the Irish Health Research Board and the European Commission. As the number of such platforms increases, it becomes critical to assess in which ways, for better or worse, this emergent phenomenon complements or disrupts the scholarly communication landscape.

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Publish AND perish: how the commodification of scientific publishing is undermining both science and the public good – Learning for Sustainability (Arjen Wals | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 04, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 19, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , ,

“Everybody is writing, nobody is reading, everybody is writing for nobody.”

Academics are spending hundreds of hours a year, getting their work published, in peer-reviewed journals, providing free labor to commercial publishing companies. The pressure to ‘produce’ and grow is huge, both in academia and... More

“Everybody is writing, nobody is reading, everybody is writing for nobody.”

Academics are spending hundreds of hours a year, getting their work published, in peer-reviewed journals, providing free labor to commercial publishing companies. The pressure to ‘produce’ and grow is huge, both in academia and in the publishing industry; this undermines quality and the university’s ability to serve the public good and, indeed, public trust in science. Open access journal Sustainability publishes over 4000 contributions in its current Volume 10 – where most contributors will have to pay 1400 US Dollars* to have their work published. Its publisher MDPI has close to 200 journals working in a similar vein.’

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Research Ethics Policy Note no. 12 – Research Involving Illegal Activities

Published/Released on December 04, 2018 | Posted by Admin on February 7, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

The University of Sheffield Research Ethics Policy Note no. 12 Research Involving Illegal Activities

This is a complex area. There is a long tradition of social science research into illegal activity that has enriched public debate about crime and a range... More

The University of Sheffield Research Ethics Policy Note no. 12 Research Involving Illegal Activities

This is a complex area. There is a long tradition of social science research into illegal activity that has enriched public debate about crime and a range of other public issues. Similarly, researchers in psychology or medicine, for example, might in the course of their research learn about criminal activity. But what is the legal and ethical position of the researcher in such circumstances? 1. LEGAL RESPONSIBILITIES Researchers have the same legal obligations that they would have in any other context, as citizens or legal residents. As a private member of society, there is, however, no general legal obligation in the United Kingdom to report to the relevant authorities all illegal activity that one observes or learns about. However, there may be moral obligations to report in the following circumstances:

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A colleague included plagiarized material in your grant proposal. Are you liable? – Retraction Watch (Richard Goldstein | December 2018)

Published/Released on December 03, 2018 | Posted by Admin on January 29, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

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International Association for the Study of Forced Migration (IASFM) Code of ethics: Critical reflections on research ethics in situations of forced migration

Context: Research with people in situations of forced migration poses particular ethical challenges because of unequal power relations, legal precariousness, extreme poverty, violence, the criminalization of migration, politicized research contexts, the policy relevance of our research and/or dependence on government and non-governmental services and funding. However,... More

Context: Research with people in situations of forced migration poses particular ethical challenges because of unequal power relations, legal precariousness, extreme poverty, violence, the criminalization of migration, politicized research contexts, the policy relevance of our research and/or dependence on government and non-governmental services and funding. However, Research Ethics Boards (REBs) are not always aware of these particular ethical issues; some countries and institutions do not have REBs; and some kinds of research are not subject to REB approval. In this context of heightened risks of research, and uneven institutional accountability for research ethics, the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration (IASFM) hereby proposes this code of ethics for research with people in situations of forced migration. Similarly to how Indigenous research methodologies incorporate a broad, engaged and critical notion of ethics that recognizes power differentiations and the agency of the participants within exploitive research histories, this document sets forth principles that are starting points for respectful research.1 It is intended to reflect the broad diversity of our membership, including those involved in gathering information – whether in an academic or community setting – as well as those who are asked to take part in research. That being said, we acknowledge that this is not a comprehensive nor exhaustive document, but rather a starting point for active, critical engagement with ethical issues.

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Controversial visiting researcher – heavily criticized as having racist work – sparks pushback – The Daily North Western (Rachel Kupfer | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 30, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 2, 2018 | Keywords: ,

Students and faculty of the psychology department are asking for a revamp of the screening process for visiting scholars after a controversial psychologist’s request to conduct research at Northwestern was approved without scrutiny. Dr. Satoshi Kanazawa, an evolutionary psychologist and intelligence researcher, is spending a year-long sabbatical from The London... More

Students and faculty of the psychology department are asking for a revamp of the screening process for visiting scholars after a controversial psychologist’s request to conduct research at Northwestern was approved without scrutiny. Dr. Satoshi Kanazawa, an evolutionary psychologist and intelligence researcher, is spending a year-long sabbatical from The London School of Economics and Political Science in Evanston. Kanazawa’s research on the relationships between intelligence, race, health and gender has provoked criticism. In 2011, he wrote an article titled “Why Are Black Women Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women” during his time as a blogger for Psychology Today. He was later removed from the site as a blogger, and the post was deleted.

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25% researchers worldwide unaware, confused what is plagiarism: Survey – Business Standard (Press Trust of India | November 2018)

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New COPE guidelines on publication process manipulation: why they matter – BMC (Jigisha Patel | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 26, 2018 | Posted by Admin on November 27, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Abstract Manipulation of the publication process is a relatively new form of misconduct affecting the publishing industry. This editorial describes what it is, why it is difficult for individual journal editors and publishers to handle and the background to the development of the new COPE guidelines... More

Abstract Manipulation of the publication process is a relatively new form of misconduct affecting the publishing industry. This editorial describes what it is, why it is difficult for individual journal editors and publishers to handle and the background to the development of the new COPE guidelines on how to manage publication process manipulation. These new guidelines represent an important first step towards encouraging openness and collaboration between publishers to address this phenomenon. 10 years ago, a retraction of an article was a rare thing. We know that the rate of journal retractions has been rising [1]. It has been argued that the increasing number of journals and the ‘pressure to publish’ have been the driving unethical practices such as data falsification, fabrication, and plagiarism [2]. There have been calls to address this by changing the way research success is measured, for example, by changing the way journal and article quality is measured and rewarded [3] in the hope that, by removing the pressure, unethical practices might decline.

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Pointing the Finger at Colleagues – Inside Higher Ed (Colleen Flaherty | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 26, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 4, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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Claim of CRISPR’d baby girls stuns genome editing summit – STAT (Sharon Begley | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 26, 2018 | Posted by Admin on February 12, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

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... More

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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CRISPR bombshell: Chinese researcher claims to have created gene-edited twins – Science (Dennis Normile | November 2018)

HONG KONG, CHINA—On the eve of an international summit here on genome editing, a Chinese researcher has shocked many by claiming to have altered the genomes of twin baby girls born this month in a way that will pass the modification on to future generations. The alteration is intended... More

HONG KONG, CHINA—On the eve of an international summit here on genome editing, a Chinese researcher has shocked many by claiming to have altered the genomes of twin baby girls born this month in a way that will pass the modification on to future generations. The alteration is intended to make the children’s cells resistant to infection by HIV, says the scientist, He Jiankui of the Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen, China. The claim—yet to be reported in a scientific paper—initiated a firestorm of criticism today, with some scientists and bioethicists calling the work “premature,” “ethically problematic,” and even “monstrous.” The Chinese Society for Cell Biology issued a statement calling the research “a serious violation of the Chinese government’s laws and regulations and the consensus of the Chinese scientific community.” And He’s university issued a statement saying it has launched an investigation into the research, which it says may “seriously violate academic ethics and academic norms.” Other scientists, meanwhile, asked to see details of the experiment and its justification before passing judgment.

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Constructive Voices: Panel discussion about institutional implementation of the National Statement (2007 updated 2018)

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Legal threats, opacity, and deceptive research practices: A look at more than 100 retractions in business and management – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | November 2018)

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AI peer reviewers unleashed to ease publishing grind – Science (Douglas Heaven | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 22, 2018 | Posted by Admin on February 4, 2019 | Keywords: , , ,

A suite of automated tools is now available to assist with peer review but humans are still in the driver's seat.

Most researchers have good reason to grumble about peer review: it is time-consuming and error-prone, and the workload is unevenly spread, with More

A suite of automated tools is now available to assist with peer review but humans are still in the driver's seat.

Most researchers have good reason to grumble about peer review: it is time-consuming and error-prone, and the workload is unevenly spread, with just 20% of scientists taking on most reviews. Now peer review by artificial intelligence (AI) is promising to improve the process, boost the quality of published papers — and save reviewers time. A handful of academic publishers are piloting AI tools to do anything from selecting reviewers to checking statistics and summarizing a paper’s findings.

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Resolving authorship disputes by mediation and arbitration (Papers: Zen Faulkes | 2018)

Published/Released on November 16, 2018 | Posted by Admin on November 19, 2018 | Keywords: , , ,

Abstract Background Disputes over authorship are increasing. This paper examines the options that researchers have in resolving authorship disputes. Discussions about authorship disputes often address how to prevent disputes but rarely address how to resolve them. Both individuals and larger research communities are... More

Abstract Background Disputes over authorship are increasing. This paper examines the options that researchers have in resolving authorship disputes. Discussions about authorship disputes often address how to prevent disputes but rarely address how to resolve them. Both individuals and larger research communities are harmed by the limited options for dispute resolution. Main body When authorship disputes arise after publication, most existing guidelines recommend that the authors work out the disputes between themselves. But this is unlikely to occur, because there are often large power differentials between team members, and institutions (e.g., universities, funding agencies) are unlikely to have authority over all team members. Other collaborative disciplines that deal with issues of collaborative creator credit could provide models for scientific authorship. Arbitration or mediation could provide solutions to authorship disputes where few presently exist. Because authors recognize journals’ authority to make decisions about manuscripts submitted to the journal, journals are well placed to facilitate alternative dispute resolution processes. Conclusion Rather than viewing authorship disputes as rare events that must be handled on a case by case basis, researchers and journals should view the potential for disputes as predictable, preventable, and soluble. Independent bodies that can offer alternative dispute resolution services to scientific collaborators and/or journals could quickly help research communities, particularly their most vulnerable members. Keywords Authorship, Alternative dispute resolution

Faulkes, Z. (2018) Resolving authorship disputes by mediation and arbitration. Research Integrity and Peer Review. 3:12. https://doi.org/10.1186/s41073-018-0057-z Publisher (Open Access): https://researchintegrityjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s41073-018-0057-z

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Research ethics, informed consent and the disempowerment of First Nation peoples (Papers: Juan M Tauri | 2017)

Abstract Recently, Indigenous commentators have begun to analyse the way in which institutional Research Ethics Boards (REBs) engage with Indigenous researchers and participants, respond to Indigenous peoples’ concerns with academic research activities, and scrutinise the ethics proposals of Indigenous scholars. Of particular concern for Indigenous commentators... More

Abstract Recently, Indigenous commentators have begun to analyse the way in which institutional Research Ethics Boards (REBs) engage with Indigenous researchers and participants, respond to Indigenous peoples’ concerns with academic research activities, and scrutinise the ethics proposals of Indigenous scholars. Of particular concern for Indigenous commentators is that the work of REBs often results in the marginalisation of Indigenous approaches to knowledge construction and dissemination, especially in relation to the vexed issue of informed consent. Based on analysis of the results of research with Indigenous researchers and research participants, this paper argues that institutionalised REBs’ preference for ‘universal’ and ‘individualised’ approaches for determining ethical research conduct marginalises Indigenous approaches to ethical research conduct. The paper concludes by calling for a decolonisation of REB processes through recognition of the validity of communal processes for attaining the informed consent of Indigenous research participants. Keywords First Nations, research ethics boards, informed consent, decolonisation

Tauri, J. M. (2018). Research ethics, informed consent and the disempowerment of First Nation peoples. Research Ethics, 14(3), 1–14. https://doi.org/10.1177/1747016117739935 Publisher (Open Access): https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1747016117739935

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Institutional Conflicts of Interest and Public Trust – JAMA Viewpoint (Francisco G. Cigarroa, MD | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 14, 2018 | Posted by Admin on November 22, 2018 | Keywords: , , ,

The World Medical Association developed the Declaration of Helsinki as a statement regarding ethical principles for medical research involving human research participants and directs physicians to promote and safeguard the health, well-being, and rights of patients. Included in this declaration is the requirement that each potential research participant be... More

The World Medical Association developed the Declaration of Helsinki as a statement regarding ethical principles for medical research involving human research participants and directs physicians to promote and safeguard the health, well-being, and rights of patients. Included in this declaration is the requirement that each potential research participant be informed of possible conflicts of interest among the researchers conducting the study.1 Many clinical trials and biomedical research projects are funded by the private sector and have led to the development of important novel therapeutics and devices that improve the health of individuals and society. [colored_box]Funding by the private sector is important to meeting the missions of many institutions and to the development of science, but may lead to potential or real individual conflicts of interest that must be effectively disclosed, reported, and managed. Institutional conflicts of interest related to clinical trials and biomedical research may occur because many research institutions and universities increasingly rely on funding from the private sector as state and federal funding has become more competitive and difficult to secure. Most research institutions and universities have conflicts of interest polices for individuals because of federal mandates issued under the auspices of the US Department of Health and Human Services. The same cannot be stated about the institutions even though institutional conflicts of interest can affect patients, multiple investigators, and the entire institution.2 . The lack of consistency among research institutions and universities related to managing institutional conflicts of interest must be addressed. Potential and real conflicts of interest require full disclosure to participants enrolled in research studies so that informed decisions can be made regarding participation. Institutional officers and committees responsible for protecting the integrity of research must also provide full disclosure and sufficient explanation regarding an investigator’s or the institution’s relationship to external entities that can either directly or indirectly affect research judgment. .

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The main obstacles to better research data management and sharing are cultural. But change is in our hands – LSE Blog (Marta Teperek and Alastair Dunning | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 14, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 7, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

This blog post is a summary of Marta Teperek’s presentation at today’s Better Science through Better Data 2018 event.

By now, it’s probably difficult to find a researcher who hasn’t heard of journal requirements for sharing research data supporting publications. Or a researcher who hasn’t... More

This blog post is a summary of Marta Teperek’s presentation at today’s Better Science through Better Data 2018 event.

By now, it’s probably difficult to find a researcher who hasn’t heard of journal requirements for sharing research data supporting publications. Or a researcher who hasn’t heard of funder requirements for data management plans. Or of institutional policies for data management and sharing. That’s a lot of requirements! Especially considering data management is just one set of guidelines researchers need to comply with (on top of doing their own competitive research, of course).

All of these requirements are in place for good reasons. Those who are familiar with the research reproducibility crisis and understand that missing data and code is one of the main reasons for it need no convincing of this. Still, complying with the various data policies is not easy; it requires time and effort from researchers. And not all researchers have the knowledge and skills to professionally manage and share their research data. Some might even wonder what exactly their research data is (or how to find it).

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(UK) Crackdown on unreported trials is good news for researchers – *Research (Till Bruckner | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 14, 2018 | Posted by Admin on January 27, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

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Research: Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) (Guidance: SOAS UL | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 14, 2018 | Posted by Admin on May 2, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

Table of Contents Research: Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) .... 1 1. Requirement .... 3 2. The Nature of the DPIA .... 3 3. Screening Evaluation .... 4 4. Content and scope .... 4 5. Process .... 5 6. Unmitigated High-Risks .... 5 Appendix 1: Screening Evaluation .... 7 Appendix 2: Data Protection Impact... More

Table of Contents Research: Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) .... 1 1. Requirement .... 3 2. The Nature of the DPIA .... 3 3. Screening Evaluation .... 4 4. Content and scope .... 4 5. Process .... 5 6. Unmitigated High-Risks .... 5 Appendix 1: Screening Evaluation .... 7 Appendix 2: Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) Template ....8 [colored_box]1. Requirement 1.1 The Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) is a requirement that is set out in both the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018.1 . 1.2 The Research Office has prepared the guide set out here as it relates to Research and it forms part of the overall Research Ethics process. It is formulated in line with SOAS’ corporate approach as set out in the Data Protection Impact Assessment Guide. .

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How a simple ‘thank you’ could improve clinical trials – Nature (Editorial | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 13, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 11, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , , ,

Everyone would benefit if researchers did more to make participants feel part of a study.

When researchers at the drug giant Pfizer wanted to improve their clinical trials, the people who had taken part had a clear suggestion: researchers should say thank you. It is... More

Everyone would benefit if researchers did more to make participants feel part of a study.

When researchers at the drug giant Pfizer wanted to improve their clinical trials, the people who had taken part had a clear suggestion: researchers should say thank you. It is a simple request, but a revealing one. When a clinical trial is completed, many participants walk away empty-handed. Most never hear from the investigators or the trial’s sponsor again. Many do not learn the results of the study in which they took part. It’s not good enough — and it indicates a deeper problem. As we discuss in a News Feature this week, clinical-trial participants and the people who care for them are increasingly seen as partners in research. They are more informed than ever about their conditions and their medical options. And they are demanding — and receiving — more of a say in how clinical trials are designed and conducted. Some of this activity has been boosted by social media, which has allowed people with medical conditions and their carers to band together, share their experiences and advocate for change.

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Constructive Voices: Panel discussion about institutional implementation of the Australian Code (2018)

On 8th November, AHRECS hosted its first Constructive Voices panel. These panels aim to create an opportunity for open discussion about human research ethics and research integrity among researchers, policymakers, research managers, research ethics reviewers and other stakeholders. The first panel featured:

  • Jillian Barr, Director of Ethics and Governance at NHMRC
  • ... More

    On 8th November, AHRECS hosted its first Constructive Voices panel. These panels aim to create an opportunity for open discussion about human research ethics and research integrity among researchers, policymakers, research managers, research ethics reviewers and other stakeholders. The first panel featured:

    • Jillian Barr, Director of Ethics and Governance at NHMRC
    • Kandy White, Director, Research Ethics and Integrity, Macquarie Uni
    • Gary Allen, Senior Consultant, AHRECS
    We had close to 40 participants at peak and would like to believe that the session nudged the debate and activity forward across a range of institutions. The PowerPoints, recording and links to relevant documents will be freely available on the AHRECS website for 90 days at https://ahrecs.com/post-panel-room Below is a recording of the panel discussion. It will here for 90 and afterwards, the materials will be archived on the Patreon site for AHRECS subscribers. OTHER MATERIAL MENTIONED Register for the National Statement Constructive Voices discussion panel event on 22 November The free Research Ethics Monthly blog - Subscribe The subscribers’ area - a subscription of USD15/month provides access to the growing library of professional development and other resources. It is also a great way to support events and services like this. If you have any questions or comments about any of the above send an email to ConstructiveVoices@ahrecs.com.   Less

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Pathogenic organization in science: Division of labor and retractions (John P. Walsh | 2018)

Published/Released on November 10, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 17, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Abstract Science is increasingly a team activity, and the size of the teams has been growing. At the same time, there are concerns about an increasing rate of pathologies in science. The growth of team science suggests the need to look beyond individual-level explanations and focus... More

Abstract Science is increasingly a team activity, and the size of the teams has been growing. At the same time, there are concerns about an increasing rate of pathologies in science. The growth of team science suggests the need to look beyond individual-level explanations and focus on organizational structures and institutional contexts to explain pathologies in science. Drawing on the literature on organizational pathologies, we argue that division of labor may be a key factor contributing to pathologies in science. Furthermore, we examine the effects of high-stakes incentives and of institutional corruption as additional predictors of scientific pathologies. Using retractions as an indicator of pathologies, and drawing on a matched sample of 195 retracted papers and 349 paired papers that were not retracted, we develop indicators of the division of labor in the team that produced a paper and find that the rate of retractions is higher as the division of labor increases (net of team size). Additionally, we find that high-stakes incentives and institutional corruption are also associated with increased retractions. We conclude with a discussion of the implications of these findings for science policy, in particular for organizing team science projects. Keywords Organization, Science, Pathologies, Corruption, Incentives, Division of labor

Walsh, J. P., et al. (2019). Pathogenic organization in science: Division of labor and retractions. Research Policy 48(2): 444-461. Publisher: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0048733318302129 Conference: https://appam.confex.com/appam/2018/webprogram/Paper26758.html

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It’s not too late to register for today’s free webinar about institutions and the implementation of the Australian Code (2018)

Published/Released on November 08, 2018 | Posted by Admin on November 7, 2018 | Keywords: , , , ,

This afternoon AHRECS is hosting a hosting a free Constructive Voices panel discussion about implementing the Australian Code 2018. The 30 minute online panel will bring together the perspectives of the NHMRC, the drafting committee and research offices. While question be sent in during the session we encourage sending... More

This afternoon AHRECS is hosting a hosting a free Constructive Voices panel discussion about implementing the Australian Code 2018. The 30 minute online panel will bring together the perspectives of the NHMRC, the drafting committee and research offices. While question be sent in during the session we encourage sending your questions to us now - ACburningquestion@ahrecs.com

New South Wales Thursday, 8 November at 2:30:00 pm AEDT UTC+11 hours
Western Australia Thursday, 8 November at 11:30:00 am AWST UTC+8 hours
Australian Capital Territory Thursday, 8 November at 2:30:00 pm AEDT UTC+11 hours
Queensland Thursday, 8 November at 1:30:00 pm AEST UTC+10 hours
South Australia Thursday, 8 November at 2:00:00 pm ACDT UTC+10:30 hours
Northern Territory Thursday, 8 November at 1:00:00 pm ACST UTC+9:30 hours
Victoria/Tasmania Thursday, 8 November at 2:30:00 pm AEDT UTC+11 hours
New Zealand Thursday, 8 November at 4:30:00 pm NZDT UTC+13 hours
. To register for this event complete the short form at  https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_nsbPkzfbT6S4YWzeEekKxA

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Kinder Peer Review – Scientists Are Humans (Dr Rebecca Kirk | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 08, 2018 | Posted by Admin on December 24, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , ,

Every day, thousands of scientists around the world donate their spare hours as peer reviewers to help colleagues (and competitors!) improve their work. But unkindness does exist too (as you can see from the emergence of Facebook groups such as Reviewer 2 Must Be Stopped…) and... More

Every day, thousands of scientists around the world donate their spare hours as peer reviewers to help colleagues (and competitors!) improve their work. But unkindness does exist too (as you can see from the emergence of Facebook groups such as Reviewer 2 Must Be Stopped…) and we all have a role to play in making it a kinder, more-productive process. As an editor, I have seen the full gamut of reviews, from unhelpful one-liners, through useful assessment of the work that highlights deficits and provides solutions to help the authors transform their paper, to unrealistic demands that go far beyond the scope of the paper under scrutiny. There is a lot of comment out there on what makes a good scientific review, but what basic tenets of peer review could we agree to sign up to if we all wanted to make science a kinder place? Importantly, all parties involved in peer review need to remember that there are people behind the science. A publication is the outcome of hard work and time away from loved ones or much-loved leisure pursuits; for some, there are hopes, dreams and grants at stake. Fair, fast, thorough and impartial assessment is needed to ensure the wheels of research keep spinning. Firstly, what can editors do? We can be transparent in our processes and keep authors informed. We can ensure we contact the best people to review a paper, and we can endeavour to provide a fast, fair decision, with guidance regarding the peer review reports and how authors might address the comments. We should ensure that we invite reviewers who represent the full spectrum of researchers. We should look for ways to support authors and referees in a continuously changing publishing landscape and to improve the peer review process by trialling new approaches that could help speed up peer review.

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Is your institution on track to have implemented the Australian Code 2018 by the 30 June deadline?

Published/Released on November 07, 2018 | Posted by Admin on November 7, 2018 | Keywords: , , ,

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

Published/Released on November 07, 2018 | Posted by Admin on February 13, 2019 | Keywords: , , , , ,

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... More

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.

[colored_box]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. . 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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It’s time to end the code of silence at universities – Retraction Watch (Ivan Oransky | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 06, 2018 | Posted by Admin on February 8, 2019 | Keywords: , , , ,

[colored_box]Yesterday, Cornell University told a group of researchers who had petitioned them to release a report of their investigation into alleged misconduct by Brian Wansink, a food marketing researcher who recently resigned his post there, that they would not release that report. As BuzzFeed reports, the... More

[colored_box]Yesterday, Cornell University told a group of researchers who had petitioned them to release a report of their investigation into alleged misconduct by Brian Wansink, a food marketing researcher who recently resigned his post there, that they would not release that report. As BuzzFeed reports, the university is now conducting a “Phase II” investigation into Wansink’s work. (It’s unclear what a “Phase II” investigation refers to; we’ve asked the university to clarify.) . Unfortunately, Cornell’s lack of transparency about the case puts them in the majority. Here’s a piece by our two co-founders, Ivan Oransky and Adam Marcus, about why this veil of secrecy needs to be lifted. . For more than a decade, Cornell University’s Brian Wansink was a king in the world of nutrition. He published his findings — on everything from why small plates make us eat less to the behavior of obese people at all-you-can-eat Chinese buffets — in top-tier journals and garnered media coverage in prestigious newspapers. His work even formed the basis of U.S. dietary guidelines. .

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Qualitative Research Ethics in the Big Data Era (Papers: Arielle Hesse, et al | 2018)

Published/Released on November 05, 2018 | Posted by Admin on November 11, 2018 | Keywords: , , , , , , ,

Abstract This article examines the developments that have motivated this special issue on Qualitative Research Ethics in the Big Data Era. The article offers a broad overview of many pressing challenges and opportunities that the Big Data era raises particularly for qualitative research. Big Data has... More

Abstract This article examines the developments that have motivated this special issue on Qualitative Research Ethics in the Big Data Era. The article offers a broad overview of many pressing challenges and opportunities that the Big Data era raises particularly for qualitative research. Big Data has introduced to the social sciences new data sources, new research methods, new researchers, and new forms of data storage that have immediate and potential effects on the ethics and practice of qualitative research. Drawing from a literature review and insights gathered at a National Science Foundation-funded workshop in 2016, we present five principles for qualitative researchers and their institutions to consider in navigating these emerging research landscapes. These principles include (a) valuing methodological diversity; (b) encouraging research that accounts for and retains context, specificity, and marginalized and overlooked populations; (c) pushing beyond legal concerns to address often messy ethical dilemmas; (d) attending to regional and disciplinary differences; and (e) considering the entire lifecycle of research, including the data afterlife in archives or in open-data facilities. Keywords Big Data, qualitative research, research ethics

Hesse, A., Glenna, L., Hinrichs, C., Chiles, R., & Sachs, C. (2018). Qualitative Research Ethics in the Big Data Era. American Behavioral Scientist. https://doi.org/10.1177/0002764218805806

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Single-molecule magnet controversy highlights transparency problems with U.K. research integrity system – C&EN (Mark Peplow | November 2018)

Published/Released on November 02, 2018 | Posted by Admin on January 26, 2019 | Keywords: , ,