Weekend reads: Country retraction rankings; social psychology department replication rankings

booksThis week at Retraction Watch featured an ironic case of what doesn’t make a journal great, and the retraction of a paper from JAMA. Here’s what was happening elsewhere:

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5 thoughts on “Weekend reads: Country retraction rankings; social psychology department replication rankings”

  1. Ross Mounce makes a very pointed argument. I found one particular paragraph absolutely correct: “Wiley are a significant player in the modern oligopoly of academic publisher knowledge racketeering. Data from FOI requests in the UK show that in the last five years (2010-2014), 125 UK Higher Education Institutes have collectively spent nearly £77,000,000 renting access to knowledge that Wiley has captured. That’s just the UK. Wiley doesn’t pay authors for their content, nor do they pay reviewers.” He also states, quite aptly, “I am already boycotting Elsevier, and am considering applying the same to subscription-access Nature Springer and Taylor & Francis journals for similar reasons.”

    Why then, do scientists continue to peer review for these for-profit publishers for free? And why do these publishers not pay reviewers and editors fees for their professional services and royalties to authors based on profits from their papers?

    One possible counter-argument to Ross Mounce might be: who would Dr. Mounce expect to review his own papers submitted to Wiley, or any journal published by a publisher he is criticizing? And this is the deep quagmire we are in as scientists.

    The solution: open-ended peer review in open access format.

  2. Not surprised they’d raid universities for people. Universities are essentially incubators of ideas tested by comparatively cheap graduate students. It’s the same as any tech company: working conditions are bad, then employees leave. If academia expects its trained PI’s/postdocs/etc to just grin and take it from indirect costs and tenure politics all day long, perhaps it’s time someone shows them how wrong they are. Also on the plus side, it’s revealing that perhaps the future of the PhD isn’t just more postdocs and fighting for limited faculty positions…it’s using your graduate training and your postdoc position, and your academic appointment to position /yourself/ for greatness, within the ivory tower or outside of it.

  3. I was rather surprised to see that RW cites the data from a paper that was apparently not peer-reviewed, and whose author seems not to be affiliated with any university or institute, as replication failure of Jens Förster’s work. I would agree that there are many problems with Förster’s work – and hopefully more news on this case will follow soon – but this move of RW seems disapppointingly tendentious and wrong.

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