Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Plagiarism leads to retraction of conduction paper

with 8 comments

physica bPhysica B: Condensed Matter has retracted a 2013 paper by a group from Morocco and France for, well, inappropriate condensation of printed matter.

The article, “Granular and intergranular conduction in La1.32Sr1.68Mn2O7 layered manganite system,” came mostly from a team of physicists at  University Ibn Zohr, and appeared in June.

According to the retraction notice:

This article has been retracted at the request of the Editors.

The authors have plagiarized part of a paper that had already appeared in J. Appl. Phys. 106, 093709 (2009);10.1063/1.3256182 (6 pages). Title: Effects of pressure on charge transport and magnetic properties of La1.32Sr1.68Mn2O7 layered manganite by M. Kumaresavanji, M.S. Reis, Y.T. Xing, and M.B. Fontes.

One of the conditions of submission of a paper for publication is that authors declare explicitly that their work is original and has not appeared in a publication elsewhere. Re-use of any data should be appropriately cited. As such this article represents a severe abuse of the scientific publishing system. The scientific community takes a very strong view on this matter and apologies are offered to readers of the journal that this was not detected during the submission process.

Written by amarcus41

October 18th, 2013 at 11:30 am

  • Sylvain Bernès October 18, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    I never understood why physicists use this strange term of “electrical conduction“. The terminology given in en.wikipedia seems much better: “Electrical conductivity or specific conductance is the reciprocal of electrical resistivity, and measures a material’s ability to conduct an electric current”.

    • Douglas Natelson October 19, 2013 at 8:41 am

      “Electrical conduction” is the process whereby charge is transported in a material. “Conductance” is the ratio of current to voltage for some particular piece of material of a certain shape and dimensions. “Conductivity” is the intensive quantity that describes the conductance normalized by the dimensions (that is, conductance times length divided by cross section is how you would find conductivity of the material if you had measured the conductance of a wire).

      • Sylvain Bernès October 19, 2013 at 10:22 am

        Thank you so much for these accurate definitions. I now realize that “conduction” is indeed the correct term to be used in the title of an article, if one refers to the general concept of charge transport.
        By the way, I discovered your blog, something like a mine of very interesting stuff…

  • F'x October 19, 2013 at 10:09 am

    There might be more to it… because the French affiliation (“Laboratoire de Spectroscopie Hertzienne”) does not exist (at least it’s not in current list of French labs). And if you look for recent papers (last few years) with this institution mentioned, all the hits have the same author: Gérard Biskupski.

    • F'x October 19, 2013 at 10:21 am

      Looking some more, it looks like Gérard Biskupski is a retired professor at Université Lille 1, and that he still publishes with his old lab name (the new lab name is PhLAM: He’s not on the current list of lab members, but he’s listed as “professor” (but no email address) on an older list of lab members ( He published his PhD thesis in 1971 and is listed as member of the retirees club of the university (

    • Joey October 21, 2013 at 6:08 am

      There is at least some considerable text recycling going on in this “group”:

      For instance, compare

      If you look up G. Biskupski’s address given on the retracted article mentioned above, you’ll end up in some housing area in Villeneuve-d’Ascq. Université Lille 1 is a campus university not too far from that address, but is there really an institute?!

      • deillevid October 21, 2013 at 1:47 pm

        I don’t think there is anything wrong with the address, it is the same as the address the PhLAM.
        It’s probable that this guy got retired before the name changing of the lab and is still using the former name as affiliation for his papers. I’m not sure he is entitled to do so but i guess that’s a matter for the University.

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