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“We need to transform the academic system so that integrity and honesty are the norm in terms of authorship as well as data and results”

An article in the Guardian newspaper last week starts: “Scientists are meant to be scrupulously honest and objective. Acting unethically or misrepresenting information could spell the end of a career. Except, there’s one instance where it’s acceptable for scientists to lie: when fraudulently claiming authorship of a paper. Too often, researchers attach their names to reports when they have contributed nothing at all to the work. The problem gets worse the higher up the academic ladder you go. The “publish or perish” motto of academic careers is true – and professors and group leaders take it seriously.”.

The article goes on to discuss the need to move away from the current broken “publish or peril” model – and offers some solutions for how this might be achieved.

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Ryan co-runs Aspire Scientific, a dynamic, forward-thinking medical writing agency. Ryan has a passion for innovation, science and ethical communication.

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