Meet the new Retraction Watch researcher, Alison Abritis

Alison Abritis
Alison Abritis

Retraction Watch readers, please join us in welcoming the newest member of our staff, Alison Abritis.

To say that Abritis is a good fit for Retraction Watch would be a colossal understatement. Abritis started her PhD in public health at the University of South Florida several years ago, intending to focus on toxicology. But her advisor noticed that every time they met, she would describe problematic papers she was reading. So he suggested that she focus on scientific publishing in her research.

The result was a fascinating dissertation,An Assessment of Retractions as a Measure of Scientific Misconduct and Impact on Public Health Risks.” She found that less than half of Office of Research Integrity (ORI) findings resulted in a published retraction or correction, and even fewer had the misconduct indicated as cause for the published notice. She questions — as we often have — whether retractions are a good indicator of the overall rate of research misconduct.

We were thrilled to be able to hire someone who had just successfully defended a dissertation on retractions as our first-ever researcher. Abritis will be working with us on various projects, from the database of retractions we’re building, to scholarly research, and a book on scientific fraud.

Abritis was hired thanks to the generosity of the Laura and John Arnold Foundation. You can follow her on Twitter here.

Abritis joins our other full-time staffers, Alison McCook and Shannon Palus. You can read more about them here.

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