The Year In Retractions, 2018: What 18,000+ retractions (and counting) told us

Another year in the books — or journals — already?

2018 was another  productive year for Retraction Watch. Topping our own leaderboard of achievements was the launch of our database of retractions, along with an analysis published in Science. With more than 18,000 entries, the repository is the largest of its kind. We are grateful to all of those who helped make it happen, including the MacArthur Foundation and Arnold Foundation, our generous funders for the project over the years, as well as individual donors. And we would like to thank our researcher, Alison Abritis, without whose efforts the project would never have come to fruition. 

But that wasn’t all we did in 2018. We continued to break stories and write in-depth analyses of research misconduct cases and other misadventures in science publishing. Some of these articles include:

We also published, with C.K. Gunsalus at the University of Illinois, an article in JAMA about the importance of transparency in institutional reports of research misconduct, and we continue to report regularly on such inquiries — often with the aid of documents that we’ve requested using public records laws.

As in years past, in 2018 we told you stories of whistleblowers and other sleuths. We look forward to bringing more of those tales in 2019.

Larger media outlets continued to be interested in retractions and related issues (a good sign, we believe) and we received many calls and emails for comment about prominent cases, such as:

and many more.

Thank you, as always, dear readers, for sticking with us, for your story ideas, critiques, and suggestions. We would be remiss if we did not ask you to let anyone you know who might want to support our work that such contributions are tax-deductible, and that if they use this link, PayPal doesn’t charge us any fees. We can also accept donations through Crowdrise, and by check made out to The Center For Scientific Integrity and sent to 121 W. 36th St., #209, New York, NY 10018.

All best for 2019.

Like Retraction Watch? You can make a tax-deductible contribution to support our growth, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, add us to your RSS reader, sign up for an email every time there’s a new post (look for the “follow” button at the lower right part of your screen), or subscribe to our daily digest. If you find a retraction that’s not in our database, you can let us know here. For comments or feedback, email us at

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