Weekend reads: Huge cash bonuses for publishing in Nature; Alzheimer’s researcher charged with fraud; fines for buying authorship

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The week at Retraction Watch featured:

Our list of retracted or withdrawn COVID-19 papers is up past 400. There are more than 49,000 retractions in The Retraction Watch Database — which is now part of Crossref. The Retraction Watch Hijacked Journal Checker now contains more than 250 titles. And have you seen our leaderboard of authors with the most retractions lately — or our list of top 10 most highly cited retracted papers? What about The Retraction Watch Mass Resignations List — or our list of nearly 100 papers with evidence they were written by ChatGPT?

Here’s what was happening elsewhere (some of these items may be paywalled, metered access, or require free registration to read):

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9 thoughts on “Weekend reads: Huge cash bonuses for publishing in Nature; Alzheimer’s researcher charged with fraud; fines for buying authorship”

  1. If the currently highly cited IQ studies are ‘racist’, why isn’t anyone publishing rebuttal studies? Why does basic science not work in this case? How hard is it to spend a week proctoring IQ tests in a country and then summarize the results? This debate has been ongoing for 100 years, in all that time nobody had a week to spend in Angola?

    1. My thought on that article was: if control groups don’t represent baselines, every medical study ever published is flawed. The twist of logic they use to argue against a guy, instead of conducting their own studies, is laughable.

      1. Control Groups should represent baselines for what you’re studying. They may not represent a baseline for something completely different, which Lynn has allegedly used them as.

        For example: if you’re studying the effects of malnutrition on intelligence you want a malnourished sample and a non-malnourished control. But the control may still not be typical.

        Eg. If your malnourished sample are all rural, you’d choose a rural control group. But if there is an intelligence difference between rural and urban populations, your control will not be typical of the country as a whole. So if Lynn takes this sample as representative of the country would be distorting things.

        And if, as claimed specifically to have left out the studies that show higher IQ, the outcome becomes inevitable.

    2. What contribution are you actually making to any argument here? It is obvious that you are carrying a torch for your peculiar biases. To single out Angola without understanding the painful colonial past tell a lot about you.

      1. “what if Africa never got colonized?”


        “What if we freed the slaves and gave them their own country?


        “What if Africans all the white people and ran their own country?”


        “What if Africans seized all the property from white people?”


        Occam’s razor tells us something here that’s already clear as day.

      2. Yes, good point. Angola had a much easier time than nations occupied by more evil empires like the British.

  2. A few caveats about IQ testing:

    All IQ tests are not the same; how well do their scores and interpretations correlate with each other?

    Which test or even which test version was used in which oountry? What were the testing conditions?

    Had that test shown to be valid and reliable for that country’s population?

    Be aware of the risks when using an IQ test developed in America on non-Americans.

    Understand the methods, difficulties, and risks in generalizing from small samples to large populations.

    Not everyone who speaks English speaks the same version of English.

    How much experience do test subjects (don’t call them testees) have with multiple choice tests?

    Be aware of confounding variables; IQ tests require the ability to read and understand the test questions, and low IQ scores may have more to do with reading skills than one’s IQ. In the US in the early 20th century, IQ tests in English were given to immigrants who did not understand English, and they were classified as “feeble minded.”

  3. The Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC), version IV, is an intelligence scale for 6 to 16 year olds. Version V will be available later this year.

    WISC IV has 10 subsets:
    Block Design
    Picture Concepts
    Matrix Reasoning
    Digit Span
    L-N Sequencing
    Symbol Search

    For different perspectives on intelligence testing, consider Robert Sternberg’s “Triarchic Abilities Test” and Howard Gardner’s “Theory of Multiple Intelligences”.

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