A year ago today, Jennifer Powers, a co-author of a 2009 paper wrote to Springer Nature to alert the publisher to the fact that Tropical Dry Deciduous Forest: Research Trends and Emerging Features, a 2017 textbook by J. S. Singh and R.K. Chaturvedi, had plagiarized her work, and the work of others. A publisher representative responded six days later, saying they would look into the matter.
Then, for five months, crickets.
On January 23 of this year, Powers, of the University of Minnesota, sent another message asking for a progress report. Several days later, a Springer Nature staffer wrote to say they would provide an answer by mid-February.
Mid-February came and went, and the co-author sent another reminder, as did Jesse Lasky, of Penn State, another of the authors who said his work had been plagiarized. Back from Springer came this message:
The authors of a controversial paper on what constitutes “normal” hormone levels in men and women — and, by implication, “male” and “female” athletes — are set to issue a massive correction of the work, Retraction Watch has learned. But an outside, albeit not disinterested, researcher who prompted the correction says the correction itself is amiss.
That finding was cited recently by an architect of the International Association of Athletics Federations’ decision to bar the South African trackstar, Caster Semenya, and other “hyperandrogenic” women (Semenya’s hormonal status has not been made public) whose hormonal constitution is arguably more male than female.
Researchers in China have lost a 2015 meta-analysis on pancreatic cancer, one of several retractions for members of the group stemming from a variety of abuses including bogus authorship and fake peer review.
The meta-analysis, “Correlation between serum levels of high mobility group box-1 protein and pancreatitis: a meta-analysis,” appeared in BioMed Research International, a Hindawi journal. The authors are affiliated with China Medical University in Shenyang and Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
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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:”
The authors of a 2019 paper on the properties of an aluminum alloy have retracted the work because, well, it was pretty much wrong.
The article, “Effect of ultrasonic temperature and output power on microstructure and mechanical properties of as-cast 6063 aluminum alloy,” appeared in the March issue of the Journal of Alloys and Compounds, an Elsevier title. The authors are affiliated with Taiyuan University of Science and Technology in China.