Addressing Author Misconduct: The Role of Researchers, Journals, and Institutions

Research Without Borders
Thursday, September 20, 2012

We hold the published scientific record in such high regard because we expect that it accurately reflects the results of research. But what happens when researchers tinker with their results, either with good or bad intent? Join us for “Addressing Author Misconduct: The Role of Researchers, Journals, and Institutions” to explore these questions and more. This panel discussion will take place on Thursday, September 20, at noon in Columbia’s Faculty House. The event is free and open to the public.

Though not a new issue, academic author misconduct has been in the spotlight due to recent high-profile cases such as that of Dutch psychologist Diederik Stapel. Many are calling for more coordination among journals, research institutions, and research leaders across the globe in dealing with the range of issues broadly described as “misconduct.” At the same time, a high volume of submissions, alongside widely available digital publishing software, has put increasing pressure on journals to inspect papers for signs of questionable practices or even data manipulation. How can journals and institutions best educate researchers about misconduct and coordinate their efforts to address it? Are there ways to take more advantage of the post-publication review processes and open discussions that are occurring organically on the Web? And when misconduct is discovered, how can the digital scientific record best be corrected?

The panel will consider the issue from diverse perspectives. The panelists are:
Liz Williams is Executive Editor of The Journal of Cell Biology.
Martin Frank is Executive Director of the American Physiological Society.
Katja Brose is Editor of the journal Neuron.
Naomi Schrag is the Associate Vice President for Research Compliance at Columbia University

This event, cosponsored by the Columbia University Office of Research Compliance and Training and Scholarly Communication Program, is the first event this academic year in the speaker series Research Without Borders: The Changing World of Scholarly Communication. Watch the live webcast here: /events/live-webcast/. You can also follow the discussion on Twitter at or by using the hashtag #rwob.