Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Archive for the ‘business’ Category

Journal: Here’s why we didn’t retract this duplicated paper

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Here’s something we don’t see every day: A journal explains in an erratum notice why it chose not to retract a paper that contains data published elsewhere.

According to the Journal of Business and Psychology, the authors violated the journal’s transparency policy by failing to disclose that they’d used the same data in their 2014 in three others. However, the editors ultimately concluded the current paper was different enough from the other three to save it from being retracted.

Here’s the erratum: Read the rest of this entry »

When most faculty publish in predatory journals, does the school become “complicit?”

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Derek Pyne

Predatory journals – which charge high fees and often offer little-to-no vetting of research quality – are a problem, and lately an easy target for authors eager to spoof the problems of the publishing system. Although many researchers try to steer clear, not all do – a recent paper showed that some top economists publish papers in potentially predatory journals. Now, a new paper in the Journal of Scholarly Publishing reports the problem may be even more widespread. Derek Pyne found that most of his colleagues at the School of Business and Economics at Thompson Rivers University in British Columbia, Canada have at least one paper in a predatory journal. We talked to Pyne about how his colleagues and administrators reacted to his findings – and how he believes they should address them.

Retraction Watch: Why did you decide to look at how many of your colleagues in the business school have published in predatory journals?

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Written by Alison McCook

May 9th, 2017 at 9:30 am

Biotech journal pulls well-cited review that plagiarized from several sources

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Applied Microbiology and BiotechnologyA biotechnology journal has retracted a 14-year-old review after an investigation concluded that the authors had plagiarized from numerous sources.  

The last author of the paper — which has been cited 289 times, according to Thomson Reuters Web of Science — told us the authors took a few lines from other reviews, and unintentionally left off the references.

In June 2011, the same author was denied a prestigious fellowship after an anonymous plagiarism allegation was filed against him. 

Here’s the retraction notice in Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology for “The nitrile-degrading enzymes: current status and future prospects:” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Dalmeet Singh Chawla

August 1st, 2016 at 9:30 am

Authors in 2014 peer review ring lose 4 more papers each for “compromised” review

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human factors and ergonomicsA journal is pulling additional papers authored by twin brothers for peer review issues.

After retracting three papers by Cheng-Wu Chen earlier this year for “compromised” peer reviewHuman Factors and Ergonomics in Manufacturing & Service Industries is now pulling four more by Chen for the same reason — and four others by his twin brother, Chen-Yuan Chen, who was a the center of a peer review ring that SAGE busted in 2014.

Cheng-Wu Chen lost 21 papers during that episode. He’s now up to 28; Chen-Yuan Chen, who also goes by Peter Chen, is now up to 43. Both are present on our leaderboard.

The notes, which appear in the March/April issue of the journal, are all identical, and also cite issues with citations:

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CDC fixes major error in flooring risk report: Not converting to metric

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CDCThe U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a correction notice to a report about formaldehyde in laminate flooring, saying a mistake had caused them to significantly underestimate the health risks.

The mistake: According to CBS’s 60 Minutes, the CDC sometimes didn’t convert feet to meters. Ouch.

In the corrected report, the agency estimates the health risks of the laminate flooring — by irritating the ear, nose and throat — to be three-fold higher than what they suggested in the original report, published February 10.

Here’s the note that now appears in the link to the original CDC report: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Alison McCook

February 22nd, 2016 at 8:00 pm

Author in 2014 peer review ring loses 3 more papers for peer review problems

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cover (1)A journal is retracting three papers — including one that is highly cited — after learning the reviewers that recommended publication had conflicts of interest.

This is a case of family values gone awry: The author common to all papers is Cheng-Wu Chen at the National Kaohsiung Marine University in Taiwan, the twin brother of one Peter Chen, who was a the center of a peer review ring that SAGE busted in 2014 (and holder of the number #3 spot on our leaderboard). Cheng-Wu Chen apparently wasn’t an innocent bystander in that episode: Of the 60 retracted papers by SAGE, Cheng-Wu Chen was a co-author on 21.

The retraction notes for all three papers — published in Human Factors and Ergonomics in Manufacturing & Service Industries — are identical:

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The Big (Retraction) Short: Securitized loans paper may get change of venue

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J financeA paper on the securitized loan industry’s pricing practices was pulled from the Journal of Finance, but may be appearing in another journal.

The Journal of Finance issued a notice of withdrawal, for “Who Facilitated Misreporting in Securitized Loans?” by John M. Griffin and Gonzalo Maturana, but does not say why it was taken out.  Griffin’s web site notes that the paper is to be published in the Review of Financial Studies.

Here’s the note, dated Sept. 23: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Jesse Emspak

January 5th, 2016 at 3:37 pm

Entrepreneur ranking retracted for not being “inclusive enough”

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VENTUREBURN_HIRES_logo

This is a first for us — a publication that covers start-ups in South Africa has retracted a list of 13 rising tech entrepreneurs for not being “inclusive enough.”

Lists are a staple of popular media, so much so that they’ve earned their own word: listicle. But we’ve never seen one get retracted before. We weren’t sure what metric of inclusion the retraction was referring to, but looking at an archive of the webpage, where the listicle appeared before the publication was taken down, we saw that every person on the list appears to be a man, and almost all of them white.

We asked Stuart Thomas, Senior Reporter at Memeburn — which published the list with a related publication, Ventureburn — if this was what the publication meant by not “inclusive enough:”

It was a factor, yes.

Here’s the note for “Digital All Stars 2015: 13 South African tech entrepreneurs on the rise:”  Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Shannon Palus

October 21st, 2015 at 11:30 am

Mega-correction for “empirical anomalies” in management paper

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The Academy of Management JournalThe author of a paper that looked at how the geographical spread of research and development sites has impacted innovation has posted a four-page list of corrections that fixed “empirical anomalies” in the paper.

A group of PhD students raised concerns about the paper’s findings, according to the editor-in-chief of The Academy of Management Journal, Gerard George. The journal formed a committee that worked with the author to reproduce the results. That ended with a correction to two of the paper’s three hypotheses, and corresponding parts of the text.

The four-page notice — (the details of which are paywalled, unfortunately) — includes notes from the journal’s editor and the author:

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Troubled article ranking business schools earns expression of concern

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jpimAn article that ranked University of Missouri-Kansas City number one in an area of business school training is set to receive an expression of concern. The move follows months of questions over the ranking’s legitimacy, following revelations such as a relationship between the authors and both the school and its top ranked researcher in the field.

In 2011, the business world got a bit of a surprise: In the field of innovation management, the study of how entrepreneurs convert good ideas into profit, the number one school – according to an article in the Journal of Product Innovation Management — was UMKC. Not Harvard, not Stanford, not any other institution that normally tops these types of rankings. UMKC’s Henry W. Bloch School of Management was also home to the number one researcher in that field, Michael Song.

The school, of course, was elated, immediately issuing a press release titled “UMKC Ranked No. 1 in the World.”

But after publication, a UMKC professor raised concerns about the paper’s methodology. An investigation by the Kansas City Star uncovered some issues:

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