Retraction Watch

Caught Our Notice: A team from Harvard, Cornell, Cambridge, HHMI, and UCSF can’t reproduce a paper’s findings

What Caught Our Attention: Any time there’s an issue with a paper co-authored by researchers from such high-profile institutions as Harvard, Cornell, and the University of Cambridge, we take notice. In this case, the group — which included Laurie Glimcher, then-dean at Cornell, now president of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute — chose to retract a … Continue reading Caught Our Notice: A team from Harvard, Cornell, Cambridge, HHMI, and UCSF can’t reproduce a paper’s findings

Weekend reads: How to get away with scientific fraud; what’s wrong with nutrition research; a second chance after misconduct

Before we present this week’s Weekend Reads, a question: Do you enjoy our weekly roundup? If so, we could really use your help. Would you consider a tax-deductible donation to support Weekend Reads, and our daily work? Thanks in advance. The week at Retraction Watch featured a collaboration with Undark looking at how scientists who commit … Continue reading Weekend reads: How to get away with scientific fraud; what’s wrong with nutrition research; a second chance after misconduct

Caught Our Notice: Hey peer reviewers — did you even read this paper??

What Caught Our Attention: A tree of life paper has been axed — and based on the information in the retraction notice, we’re wondering how it ever passed peer review. Specifically, the notice states a review of the paper found “concerns regarding the study design, methodology, and interpretation of the data.” Overall, the research “contradict(s) … Continue reading Caught Our Notice: Hey peer reviewers — did you even read this paper??

What took more than five years? Elsevier retracts 20 papers by world’s most prolific fraudster

In 2012, investigations found that researcher Yoshitaka Fujii had fabricated well in excess of 100 papers, and recommended scores of retractions. Yet years later, publishers are still cleaning the literature of his problematic work.   For anyone not familiar the Fujii case: After researchers raised concerns about Fujii’s work, an anesthesiologist used statistical tools to … Continue reading What took more than five years? Elsevier retracts 20 papers by world’s most prolific fraudster

Journal says it will correct three papers by prominent psychologist for duplication

Some heavy criticism of a high-profile scientist has prompted one journal to announce it plans to correct the record. Following a series of allegations about the work of psychologist Robert Sternberg at Cornell, a journal has declared it plans to correct three of his papers. Last month, Inside Higher Ed reported that critics have raised … Continue reading Journal says it will correct three papers by prominent psychologist for duplication

Survey says: A researcher wasn’t sure if he needed to correct a paper. So he created a poll.

When geophysicist Craig Jones realized a figure in one of his published papers contained an error, he was on the fence about what to do. It was a clear mistake, but he’d seen much larger mistakes go uncorrected by other authors. Unsure if it warranted a correction, Jones polled readers of his blog to see … Continue reading Survey says: A researcher wasn’t sure if he needed to correct a paper. So he created a poll.

A cancer researcher said she collected blood from 98 people. It was all her own.

A researcher collected her own blood and forged the labels so it would appear to be samples from nearly 100 people, according to a new finding of research misconduct released today by the U.S. Office of Research Integrity (ORI). The former researcher at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center swapped her own blood … Continue reading A cancer researcher said she collected blood from 98 people. It was all her own.

A former employee admitted to scientific misconduct. His new institution likely doesn’t know. What should you do?

A few years ago, Richard Miller of the University of Michigan had a serious dilemma: He discovered a former researcher in his lab was doing research somewhere else. Normally, that would be fine — except this research had admitted to committing misconduct in Miller’s lab. Should he tell the researcher’s new employer? This turns out … Continue reading A former employee admitted to scientific misconduct. His new institution likely doesn’t know. What should you do?

Weekend reads: Vaccine-neurological damage paper retracted under protest; buy a PhD thesis for $10,000; retraction by press release?

Before we present this week’s Weekend Reads, a question: Do you enjoy our weekly roundup? If so, we could really use your help. Would you consider a tax-deductible donation to support Weekend Reads, and our daily work? Thanks in advance. The week at Retraction Watch featured a three-part series about what happened when a team tried … Continue reading Weekend reads: Vaccine-neurological damage paper retracted under protest; buy a PhD thesis for $10,000; retraction by press release?

The mystery of the mistaken retraction is solved — sort of

We finally have some clarity on the case of the erroneous retraction over at the Annals of Surgical Oncology. Last week, we reported that the journal, and its publisher, Springer Nature, were having some trouble with a retracted presentation from a 2017 cancer meeting. Turns out, the issue involved crossed wires for similar articles in … Continue reading The mystery of the mistaken retraction is solved — sort of

One team’s struggle to publish a replication attempt, part 3

Which journals will publish replications? In the first post in this series, Mante Nieuwland, of the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, described a replication attempt of a study in Nature Neuroscience that he and his colleagues carried out. Yesterday, he shared the story of their first submission to the journal. In the final installment today, … Continue reading One team’s struggle to publish a replication attempt, part 3

Controversial Australian science journalist admits to duplication in her PhD thesis

A prominent (yet controversial) journalist in Australia has admitted to duplicating three images that were part of her PhD thesis — a practice outside experts agreed was acceptable, if not ideal, at the time, according to a report released today. As part of an inquiry, the University of Adelaide convened an expert panel to investigate … Continue reading Controversial Australian science journalist admits to duplication in her PhD thesis

An attempt to publish a replication attempt in a Nature journal, part 2

Do journals walk the walk when it comes to publishing replications? In the first installment in this series of guest posts, Mante Nieuwland, of the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, described a replication attempt of a study in Nature Neuroscience that he and his colleagues carried out. Today, he shares the story of their first … Continue reading An attempt to publish a replication attempt in a Nature journal, part 2

Nature says it wants to publish replication attempts. So what happened when a group of authors submitted one to Nature Neuroscience?

Over the past few years, Nature has published editorials extolling the virtues of replication, concluding in one that “We welcome, and will be glad to help disseminate, results that explore the validity of key publications, including our own.” Mante Nieuwland, of the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, and colleagues were encouraged by that message, and … Continue reading Nature says it wants to publish replication attempts. So what happened when a group of authors submitted one to Nature Neuroscience?

A frustrated former editor asked a publishing group for help. He didn’t like what they said.

When the former editor of a public health journal didn’t get a straight answer about why the journal retracted his paper that was critical of corporate-sponsored research, he brought his concerns to an organization dedicated to promoting integrity in academic publishing. He wanted the group to help resolve the impasse he’d reached with the publisher, … Continue reading A frustrated former editor asked a publishing group for help. He didn’t like what they said.

Weekend reads: Heart drug scandal widens; sexual harassment allegations force editor’s resignation; a dying scientist’s rogue vaccine trial

Before we present this week’s Weekend Reads, a question: Do you enjoy our weekly roundup? If so, we could really use your help. Would you consider a tax-deductible donation to support Weekend Reads, and our daily work? Thanks in advance. The week at Retraction Watch featured a boycott by thousands of researchers of a new Nature … Continue reading Weekend reads: Heart drug scandal widens; sexual harassment allegations force editor’s resignation; a dying scientist’s rogue vaccine trial

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