Journalist gets death threats after reporting plagiarism accusations against Croatian official

Damir Krstičević

Plagiarism scandals involving top government officials in the Balkans are not rare. But when Croatia’s defense minister Damir Krstičević was accused last week of plagiarizing parts of his research project, things got ugly.

The minister summoned a press conference within a day, in which he indignantly downplayed any plagiarism accusation and turned the tables by verbally attacking the journalist who first printed the allegations. Following the press conference, the journalist received death threats on social media.

Nenad Jarić Dauenhauer, science reporter for a popular news website, Index.hr, reported how the minister’s 1997/98 paper at the United States Army War College in Carlisle, Pa., contained several paragraphs that seemed to be completely copied from two other works.  

Whether the college will act on this new revelation is unclear. The public affairs office hasn’t yet responded to our request for comment.

Continue reading Journalist gets death threats after reporting plagiarism accusations against Croatian official

Montenegro’s science minister accused of plagiarism

vlahovic
Sanja Vlahovic

Sanja Vlahovic, science minister of Montenegro, copied two-thirds of a 2010 paper on tourism from previously published work by other academics, according to the national daily newspaper Vijesti.

The newspaper compared her paper, “Destinations’ Competitiveness in Modern Tourism,” presented at the Tourism & Hospitality Management 2010 conference in Opatija, Croatia, to three previously published papers and found much of the content to be identical, without the minister acknowledging two of those papers in the bibliography. Continue reading Montenegro’s science minister accused of plagiarism

Serbian journal lands in hot water after challenge on 24 hour peer review that cost 1785 euros

naslovna1This story began as a report of a one-off case of potential predatory practice last month, and has escalated to an official call to disband an entire international editorial board, and an accusation against the editor of mass-scale nepotism and other publishing misconduct.

The journal, Archives of Biological Sciences (ABS) is the official publication of the Serbian Biological Society, co-published by ten organisations in Serbia and Bosnia. It was accused (on June 12) on the Scholarly Open Access blog of accepting a paper in 24 hours with no peer review, and demanding 1785 euros for publishing it. Continue reading Serbian journal lands in hot water after challenge on 24 hour peer review that cost 1785 euros

Fallout from Science’s publisher sting: Journal closes in Croatia

Screen Shot 2013-10-17 at 10.11.01Science‘s John Bohannon has recently revealed the extent of poor or non-existent peer review in some journals that call themselves peer-reviewed, as we reported on here.

Now, an open-access publisher based in Rijeka, Croatia, called InTech, has cancelled its journal that was targeted and exposed by Science’s investigation. The journal was going to charge 400 euros to publish the paper by Bohannon.

The International Journal of Integrative Medicine has been “discontinued”, does “not accept submissions” and “is no longer active” states the publisher’s website.

The notice, posted just a day after Science published its piece, says: Continue reading Fallout from Science’s publisher sting: Journal closes in Croatia

Lyme disease diagnostics review retracted for plagiarism

Medical reviewA review paper published in the Serbian journal Medicinski pregled (Medical review) has been retracted for plagiarising a 2002 paper published in the Croatian Journal of Infection (or Infektološki glasnik).

The retraction note (in Serbian only) in the current issue (vol. 65, issue 11-12) of Medicinski pregled, published by the Society of Physicians of Vojvodina of the Medical Society of Serbia reads: Continue reading Lyme disease diagnostics review retracted for plagiarism

Chemical engineer apologizes for “deliberate lapse,” retracts two papers from Croatian journal

Chemical and Biochemical Engineering QuarterlyA professor of chemical engineering in India has retracted two papers after what he called a “deliberate lapse” of submitting the work without the knowledge of his co-author.

The two papers by Kailas L. Wasewar, then an associate professor in the Chemical Engineering department of Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology in Nagpur, India — he appears to be at the Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee now — appeared in 2006 in consecutive issues of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering Quarterly, the official journal of the Croatian Society of Chemical Engineers, Slovenian Chemical Society and Austrian Association of Bioprocess Technology.

The retraction notice appeared in the December issue, following a 27 November letter to the editor: Continue reading Chemical engineer apologizes for “deliberate lapse,” retracts two papers from Croatian journal

Duplicate analysis of Eastern Europe’s GDP retracted from two journals, one in US, one in Croatia

Proceedings of Rijeka Faculty of Economics: Journal of Economics and BusinessTwo papers by researchers from China and Taiwan have been retracted from two journals, one based in the US, one in Croatia, after identical studies appeared in the June 2011 issues of both publications.

Eastern European Economics retracted their version first, and that journal’s editor discussed the case with the editors of Proceedings of Rijeka Faculty of Economics: Journal of Economics and Business, where the same paper was also published.

Eastern European Economicsretraction reads: Continue reading Duplicate analysis of Eastern Europe’s GDP retracted from two journals, one in US, one in Croatia

Serbian scientists decry systematic plagiarism, predatory publishing

serbiaAn open letter to the Serbian science ministry – coinciding with the new government’s first 100 days in office – and an accompanying petition signed by 850 scientists so far, makes for pretty dim reading on the state of research ethics in Serbia.

The systematic and apparently state-endorsed practice of artificially boosting one’s ratings in the national evaluation system, which drives promotions and helps set salaries, has led to a range of abuses that are promoting mediocrity while driving scientific talent out of the country, says the letter, published in late October.

The authors say that the offenses that have proliferated over the last decade, and which are being “systematically hidden” under what the letter says are bad policies set by the science ministry, include: Continue reading Serbian scientists decry systematic plagiarism, predatory publishing

Group’s duplication retractions span the globe, from New Zealand to Romania to Croatia

The retraction count continues to grow for a group of Iranian scientists who appear to have published similar work four times.

The group was forced to retract a Journal of Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases paper in March. That retraction came alongside one in the New Zealand Journal of Medical Laboratory Science, whose editor had tipped JGLD editor Monica Acalovschi — who has taken a tough stance on duplication in her own journal, published in Romania — off to the duplication. Acalovschi, in turn, tipped off Biochemia Medica, the journal of Croatian Society of Medical Biochemistry and Laboratory Medicine, which has now retracted a 2009 paper by the group.

The Biochemia Medica retraction, published in its June 2012 issue, says: Continue reading Group’s duplication retractions span the globe, from New Zealand to Romania to Croatia

A tsunami of plagiarism in Serbia, but hardly any retractions

Today, we have the pleasure of presenting a guest post from Mico Tatalovic, who wrote in October aboutretractions in journals in his home country, Croatia. Here, he describes what appears to be an alarming rate of plagiarism in Serbian journals.

A report for the Serbian science ministry by the Centre for Evaluation in Education and Science (CEON) found that whopping 11% of scientific journal articles by Serbian authors published in English language but in Serbian journals were plagiarised. The proportion was similar across all sciences (natural, medical, technical and social).

Apart from widespread plagiarism, they also found that 0.35% of the articles in the the Serbian citation index and journal database (SCIndeks) were published twice in identical form, often in the same journal.

Forgetful editors who still track manuscripts ‘manually’ may forget to mark them as ‘published’, which can result in duplicates in the same journal, according to Pero Sipka, director of CEON.

Interestingly, editors and publishers were less likely to deem a paper plagiarised than were outside analysts, according to the report, and not all editors and publishers openly cooperated.

Given the shocking amount of plagiarism you might also expect to see a flurry of retractions, but it’s not so.

Continue reading A tsunami of plagiarism in Serbia, but hardly any retractions