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News archiveback to 2017

Scientist crispr'd babies

Late Sunday night, a Chinese researcher stunned the world by claiming to have created the first human babies, a set of twins, with Crispr-edited DNA (Wired). Read more »

AD dismisses misconduct finding complaint

The Swedish Labour Court shuts down the possibility for appeals regarding research misconduct (Lag&Avtal). Read more »

The Replication Crisis

In this radio program from BBC,you'll learn that many key findings in psychological research are under question, as the results of some of its most well-known experiments have proved difficult or impossible to reproduce. Featuring contributions from John Bargh, Susan Fiske, John Ioannidis, Brian Nosek, Stephen Reicher, Diederik Stapel and Simine Vazire. Read more/listen »

Most Chinese scientists write academic papers to get promoted, survey finds

Nearly half of those polled said they believed the way the authorities appraised scientific research was misleading (South China Morning Post). Read more »

New perspectives on data handling

October 3 a Nordic workshop on good data practices was held. It focused on strategic work on data handling, open data and use of the FAIR principles, as well as Nordic cooperation on these issues (Swedish Research Council). Read more »

Time is short for open access plan S

Plan S är is a European initiative to further the process towards having publicly financed research results open for all from 2010. But the short time for implementation receives criticism (Curie). Read more »

Labour Court will rule on misconduct appeal

The Swedish labour court will decide whether it will be possible to appeal to them when found guilty of research misconduct. In a report The Swedish Agency for Government Employers says that such appeals do not pertain to labour rights, but to administrative law, and therefore it is not possible to appeal. (Lag & Avtal). Read more »

Welcome to the Moral Machine!

Moral dilemmas with driverless cars force you to make a moral decision. Then compare your responses to other people (and you help out with moral research too!) Read more »

Deteckting fake university degrees in a digital world

Fake diplomas are not new and will continue to pose a threat to higher education for the foreseeable future, but recent initiatives involving digital diplomas in secure databases may be one of the most promising ways to combat false qualifications in the future (University World News). Read more »

Universities maintain researchers did misconduct

Two cases of possible misconduct in research have ended up in court. In both cases, CEPN finds the accused not guilty, while their universities still claim they committed misconduct. - This illustrates the uncertain legal procedures we have now, SULF's Robert Andersson says (Universitetsläraren). Read more »

Editors resign after pressure to publish mediocre papers

All 10 senior editors of the open-access journal Nutrients resigned last month, alleging that the publisher, the Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI), pressured them to accept manuscripts of mediocre quality and importance (Science). Read more »

New authority for ethical vetting of research

In January 2019 a new board for the ethical vetting of human subjects research starts its work. Curie has spoken to Johan Modin, responsible for setting up the new authority. Read more »

Soon open access is implemented

Recently, Science Europe presented a plan for how to speed up the transfer to open access for research, Plan S. All publications funded by the public should be open from 1 January, 2020. The research council is basically in agreement with the plan (Swedish Research Council). Read more »

Cheating researchers can get new chances

University employees who are subject to disciplinary action following decision on research fraud have not been able to appeal against the decisions so far. Now Växjö District Court has, in a unique decision, given a researcher at Linnéuniversitetet the right to have his case tested in another instance. Read more »

Many co-authors without contributing

Despite clear guidelines on co-authorship, over half of PhD's in medicine claim that the guidelines are breached. This is shown in a new study following up on an investigative article from Läkartidningen. Read more »

Increase in predatory publishing

More than 5 000 German scholars have published in predatory journals, a new study from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists finds. Read more »

Individual research results should be shared

A new report says individual research results should be shared with participants more often, and recommends a framework for decision-making (National Academies). Read more »

Karolinska must make new, thorough secrecy test

A Swedish court has decided that Karolinska University Hospital must do a new and more thorough assessment of the confidentiality in a case involving giveing access to documents concerning possible research misconduct (Swedish Courts). Read more »

Government proposes new misconduct authority

A new authority named ' Oredlighetsnämnden' will deal with misconduct investigations, proposes the Swedish government in a new referral to the Council on Legislation (Läkartidningen). Read more »

Stop for student journal-based projects

From now on, no students at Uppsala university will have access to the hospitals journal systems for carrying out projects (Läkemedelsvärlden). Read more »

Stanford Prison Experiment massively influential - but a fraud

The most famous psychological studies are often wrong, fraudulent, or outdated. Textbooks need to catch up (Vox).Read more »

Regulating research registries

A Swedish public inquiry suggests a solution for how to regulate registry research (Ministry of education & research). Read more »

GDPR Special!

What does the General Data Protection Regulation mean for research? Here are some guidance available on the issue:

False scholars - misconduct or not?

The Vice-Chancellor of Karolinska institutet asks for clearer guidelines stating whether it is misconduct to to publish scholarly articles with a false name and university affiliation (Sveriges Radio). Read more »

Sweden cancels deal with publisher Elsevier

Swedish research libraries now cancel their deal with the leading scholarly publisher Elsevier. The reason ? It does not comply with demands for open access (Universitetsläraren). Read more »

Will university researchers create ‘killer robots’?

Campaigners fear a huge increase in EU military research spending will lead to development of autonomous weapons (Times Higher Education). Read more »

In a Big Data World, Scholars Need New Guidelines

User information from Facebook and other social-media sites is invaluable to political and social scientists, but it must be treated with care (Scientific American). Read more »

Could be others with false KI affiliation

KI officials have yet not been able to identify who is publishing vaccin critical papers in the name of KI. They cannot exclude the possibility of there being others using the strategy (Läkartidningen). Read more »

Gene breeding industry needs ethical committees

Modern gene technology creates opportunities for breeding companies, but also provokes many ethical questions. To set up ethical advisory groups can be a solution to the issue of when and how to use this technique instead of traditional breeding (Mistra). Read more »

New EU legislation to protect whistleblowers

An upcoming legislation to protect whistleblowers seeks to prevent retaliation such as demotion or dismissal, and safeguard their ability to shed light on unlawful activity. Read more »

The ethics of experimenting with human brain tissue

Difficult questions will be raised as models of the human brain get closer to replicating its functions, explains a Nature comment. Read more »

Consensus document on working with research integrity

The European PRINTEGER project has issued a consenus document on how to strengthen integrity in research organisations. Read more »

Swedish Parliament want stricter liability for misconduct

The Parliament want stronger penalties for professional misconduct in the public administration. It says this will improve the rule of law and strenghten trust in public administration (GP). Read more »

Human studies often launched on faulty evidence base

New research reveals serious flaws in the animal studies that regulators and ethicists use to decide if an experimental drug should be tested in humans (Reuters). Read more »

Research Fairness Initiative

Fair partnerships are essential for research and development and the RFI intends to create a reporting system that encourages governments, agencies, and research institutions to describe how they take measures to create trusting, lasting, transparent and effective partnerships in research and innovation. Read more »

Researchers share data but find it a challenge

Researchers desire data sharing but face many challenges in doing so, a whitepaper from Springer Nature reveals. Read more »

Should patients have a 'Right to try' experimental drugs?

US lawmakers are trying to help desperate patients by adopting "right to try" laws for experimental treatments that may be given outside of clinical trials (Medical Xpress). Read more »

Peer Review fails to prevent publication of paper with unsupported claims about peer review

It’s perhaps ironic that a paper finding no value in peer review is so flawed that its conclusions are untenable, yet its publication in a journal is itself an indictment of peer review, says a recent piece in Scholarly kitchen. Read more »

Advisory group reports

As part of the EDPS 2015-2019 strategy, the Ethics Advisory Group is set up with the mandate to explore the relationships between human rights, technology, markets and business models in the 21st century. It has now published its 2018 Report. Read more »

Few caught cheating in research at largest universities

Of 65 reported cases during the last two years, 7 have been pronounced cases of research misconduct, a survey shows (Universitetsläraren). Read more »

NSF requires sexual harassment to be reported

The US National Science Foundation have announced a new set of measures to combat sexual harassment by people working on the projects it funds. (Science). Read more »

Suspicion of fraud not enought to freeze funds

The government have made it possible to freeze funding during the time of a misconduct investigation, but the Swedish Research Council will not halt funding during an investigation, writes Sven Stafström (Universitetsläraren). Read more »

Ethical Shades of Gray

In a survey on 43 different Questionable Research Practices, over 90 % of respondents in health professions education research admitted to have engaged in such practices (BioRxiv). Read more »

Experiment a recipe for terrorists?

A recent paper describes how researchers assembled bits of DNA and resurrected in the lab a variant of smallpox. Authors claim their experiments might lead to improved vaccines, but critics have questioned whether the study could give terrorists or rogue states a recipe to reconstitute the smallpox virus (Washington Post). Read more »

Novel solution to the 'predatory journals' problem

Alex Holcombe proposes an automated way to create a whitelist of legitimate journals for people to consult. Read more »

New survey on misconduct revealing

Most academic and industrial scientists polled had either committed or witnessed unethical practices (Chemistry World). Read more »

European court suggests relaxed gene-editing rules

Judicial opinion says restrictive GMO regulations may not apply to plants and animals bred using CRISPR technique (Nature). Read more »

Questionable tests on monkeys, people revealed

The German government on Monday dismissed as unjustifiable any auto emissions testing on monkeys or people (Reuters). Read more »

A Big Brother future for science publishing?

Will scientists be both the customers and the product of Elsevier? (Richard Smith, BMJ Opinion). Read more »

Controversial Monkey Cloning Success

First time that scientists have successfully cloned primates using a method known as somatic cell nuclear transfer, provokes scientific and ethical questions (Smithsonian). Read more »

VR able to freeze funds when misconduct is investigated

The Swedish Government has decided on changes in the instruction for Vetenskapsrådet meaning that decisions not tp pay funding can be made for a certain time. This makes possible a freeze of funding during the time of an investigation (Swedish Government). Read more »

Also read about a case raising the issue (Läkartidningen)

New regulation on animal experimentation

The Swedish Board of Agriculture have presented a new ordinance on animal experimentation and ethics approval. It has been sent out for referral and here are the answers from the Swedish Better Regulation Council, Stockholms University and The Swedish Gene Technology Advisory Board.

Data Inspection Board to be Integritetsskyddsmyndigheten

The Swedish Government gives Datainspektionen 30 million extra to strenghten their work on personal integrity. It is proposed that it changes its name to Integritetsskyddsmyndigheten and becomes more supportive and advisory (InfoTorg). Read more »

Arguments against experimenting on dogs

The advances in neuroscience and related technology make the practical need and ethics for conducting tests on dogs increasingly questionable (Mathrubhumi). Read more »

Uproar over unregulated herpes experiments in the US

Recent revelations that a U.S. researcher injected Americans with his experimental herpes vaccine without routine FDA safety oversight raised an uproar among scientists and ethicists (StatNews). Read more »

US moratorium on high-risk virus research lifted

The three-year-old policy had 'paused 21 publicly-funded projects (Scientific American). Read more »

New code for health data by and for researchers

A code of conduct is being created to help dealing with the new data regulation in the EU. Read more »

Sweden's new 3R centre opened

Here vou find information on the new 3R centre (Swedish Board of Agriculture). Read more »

Expert: Make reviews public!

After more than 30 years working with scholarly journals, Irene Hames has some thoughts on how to improve peer review (Retraction Watch). Read more »

OMICS lost in preliminary court ruling

The Federal Trade Commission in the US has won an initial court ruling against OMICS, which the government says will help stop the academic publisher’s deceptive business practices (Retraction Watch). Read more »

An alliance for science society publishers

"SSPA members are concerned that the proliferation of perceived high-impact, for-profit journals — most of which are not rooted in the scientific community — is damaging science by diminishing the influence of active, practicing scientists in determining the trajectories of their disciplines" (SSPA). Read more »

A Nonprofit Alternative to Research Gate

Scholars are planning an alternative site on which to network and share work (Inside Higher Education). Read more »

Ethical principles for the use of human cellular biotechnologies

A consensus statement (Nature Biotechnlogy). Read more »

Privacy Flag

A European research project on personal data protection to assess the compliance of applications, websites, and Internet of Things deployments with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation. Read more »

A Declaration of Helsinki for Engineers

Climate change is a serious global problem and if the professional institutions take seriously the claim that a profession should be self-regulating, they ought to develop a declaration for engineers addressing climate change, the authors of a new article claim (Science and Engineering Ethics). Read more »

Will scientific publishing change form?

This question is asked in an interesting new article in International Journal of Radiation Oncology by Anthony Zietman.

How to acknowledge bioresource work

In a new article, Heidi Howard et al. asks "How to responsibly acknowledge research work in the era of big data and biobanks" and analyse "ethical aspects of the Bioresource Research Impact Factor" (J Community Genet). Read more »

Updated guidelines on peer review

COPE has produced some guidelines which set out the basic principles and standards to which all peer reviewers should adhere during the peer-review process in research publication. Read more »

Favourite plagiarism excuses

At a recent conference, the  National Science Foundation (NSF) Inspector General, Allison Lerner, presented the office's favorite plagiarism excuses (University of New Hampshire)Read more »

New bioethics journal

...and it is called Bioethics Journal! Issued by Harvard Medical School. Read more »

Human embryos gene-edited

The work, which removed a gene mutation linked to a heart condition, is fueling deba te over the controversial tool known as CRISPR (National Geographic). Read more »

Cabell's new predatory journal blacklist

A first review of the list that aims to replace the well-known Beall's list (Scholarly Kitchen). Read more »

Include pregnant women in studies, urge researchers

Pregnant women should not be excluded from clinical studies because this practice is unfair and potentially harmful, perpetuating the lack of knowledge about the effect of drugs in pregnancy, researchers insist (Onmedica). Read more »

Europe to Stay Open for Primate Research

Should European researchers be allowed to continue using non-human primates in their research? For the moment at least, it should remain permissible, according to an influential European Union advisory committee (Applied Clinical Trials). Read more »

KI to demand electronic research documentation

To stop new Macchiarini cases, Karolinska institutet, KI, will make it obligatory for researchers to electronically document their research (Läkartidningen). Read more »

Ethics must not be lost

The flood of new health apps can bring about improvement of public health but there are also dangers that should be considered, writes Statens medicinsk-etiska råd in an opinion piece (Dagens Medicin). Read more »

Initiative for Open Citations

The Initiative for Open Citations I4OC is a collaboration between scholarly publishers, researchers, and other interested parties to promote the unrestricted availability of scholarly citation data. Read more »

Swedish patient data sent overseas to private company

When many Swedish hospitals measure care quality, they collect lots of data on patients. This creates ethical issues. Is it legal to send data to a private company overseas? Who guarantees the patients' right to integrity? (DN Debatt) Read more »

Legally binding agreement on human cloning?

Since Dolly the Sheep was cloned, the question of whether human reproductive cloning should be banned or pursued has been the subject of international debate. Researchers argue that a robust global governance framework on human cloning should draw on recent successes in climate change and business ethics for inspiration (Springer). Read more »

Call for new cancer drugs suitable for kids

The children's cancer foundation ctiticizes the new generation cancer treatments in their yearly report. These drugs are only tested on adults and thereby often cannot be used to treat children (Läkartidningen). Read more »

The EU Bioethics Council is back

The European Commission has again appointed members to its European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies (SMER). Read more »

Protection for research results will be considered

An investigator will make an inquiry into whether the legal protection of research results needs strenghtening in order to fascilitate innovation (Swedish Government). Read more »

PubMed indexing no guarantee against being predatory

A new study of predatory journals in neuroscience show that they are not listed in DOAJ, Scopus, or MEDLINE, but many of them are indexed in PubMed (article in Neuroscience). Read more »

Patient data should not have been released

Stockholm County Council did not follow the patient data act when an external company gained direct access to patient data for inclusion in a research project (Dagens Medicin). Read more »

Sexual harassment defined as scientific misconduct?

A major U.S.-based scientific geophysics society is on the verge of expanding its definition of research misconduct to include sexual harassment (Science). Read more »

Two researchers guilty of misconduct, says investigation

A Swedish university has concluded that two professors studying tissue engineering are guilty of misconduct in two published papers (Retraction Watch). Read more »

New order for investigating misconduct suggested

The public inquiry has now given its proposal (see right column with new documents). Read commentary by the Swedish Research Council »

Top Takeaways from the Common Rule Amendments

A column discusses premier takeaways from the recent amendments to the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects (Jurist Twenty). Read more »

A solution in search of a problem: Streamlining the FDA

President Trump is calling for a massive overhaul of US Food and Drug Administration regulations ( Read more »

No More 'Beall's List'

Librarian removes controversial list of "predatory journals" and publishers, reportedly in response to "threats and politics" (Inside Higher Ed). Read more »

The U.S. final rule is now updated

The U.S. federal agencies have issued an update of the regulations that safeguard individuals who participate in research. It strengthens protections for people who volunteer to participate in research, while ensuring that the oversight system does not add inappropriate administrative burdens, particularly to low-risk research (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services). Read more »

Updated publication guidelines

The ICMJE has updated the so-called Vancouver rules, to address questions on predatory publishing, when to correct and retract, and more. An annotated version identifying the changes can be found here.

New organisation for RECs proposed

In a governmental pm it is suggested that Sweden should have an organisation for ethical review of research that uses the advantages both of regional presence and the efficacy and uniformity that a central authority brings. Read more »

Statcheck exposes inconsistent p values in articles

A Dutch researcher has created software that automatically extracts statistics from articles to reveal misleading p values. Read more »

The latest news are published on the start page of CODEX!

Last update: 2019-02-01

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