"We need a better system," said Harold Garner, executive director of the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech. Garner discussed the problem and solution in a Comment in the January 4, 2012 issue of Nature and in a January 19, 2012 radio interview with NPR's Leonard Lopate.
Garner, creator of eTBLAST plagiarism detection software, identified numerous instances of wholesale plagiarism among citations in MEDLINE. "When my colleagues and I introduced an automated process to spot similar citations in MEDLINE, we uncovered more than 150 suspected cases of plagiarism in March, 2009.
"Subsequent ethics investigations resulted in 56 retractions within a few months. However, as of November 2011, 12 (20 percent) of those "retracted" papers are still not so tagged in PubMed. Another two were labeled with errata that point to a website warning the papers are "duplicate" -- but more than 95 percent of the text was identical, with no similar co-authors."
But even when plagiarism is uncovered, it does not guarantee that the plagiarized articles will be retracted. In Garner's study, as noted in his Nature commentary, "Three of the 56 retracted papers are cited in books, including one citation after the retraction. Another eight were cited in other PubMed Central archived articles before retraction, and seven were cited after retraction."
Some researchers say plagiarism has become a pandemic in many large institutions and schools, and that there is an entire industry built on the business of copying the work of others for the purpose of developing theses content and technical papers.
Quelling the proliferation of scientific plagiarism by identifying and retracting plagiarized articles is not the only issue. Publication editors and researchers must agree on the definition of plagiarism as noted in Nature.
Said Garner, "Ultimately, plagiarism comes down to human judgment, similar to other questionable practices -- you know it when you see it."
The Comment in Nature appears here: http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v481/n7379/full/481021a.html#/harold-garner-flag-plagiarized-studies
Watch Garner here: http://youtu.be/cuAjUqNF-R8
Garner also was featured in an interview with NPR's Leonard Lopate of WNYC, January 19, 2012. Lopate investigated with Garner the prevalence and problems presented by plagiarism of scientific and medical literature, and discussed ways that new detection software can help to identify plagiarized materials and encourage publication editors to retract these articles.
Listen to the interview: http://www.wnyc.org/shows/lopate/2012/jan/
About the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute
The Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech is a premier bioinformatics, computational biology, and systems biology research facility that uses transdisciplinary approaches to science, combining information technology, biology, and medicine. These approaches are used to interpret and apply vast amounts of biological data generated from basic research to some of today's key challenges in the biomedical, environmental, and agricultural sciences.
With more than 320 highly trained multidisciplinary, international personnel, research at the institute involves collaboration in diverse disciplines such as mathematics, computer science, biology, plant pathology, biochemistry, systems biology, statistics, economics, synthetic biology, and medicine. The large amounts of data generated by this approach are analyzed and interpreted to create new knowledge that is disseminated to the world's scientific, governmental, and wider communities.
Aleta Todd Delaplane | EurekAlert!
The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung
A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg
An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
19.01.2017 | Event News
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
20.01.2017 | Awards Funding
20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.01.2017 | Life Sciences