Retraction from a Journal vs. Withdrawal from an Archive

From: Barry Mahon <barry.mahon_at_IOL.IE>
Date: Fri, 6 Jan 2006 19:47:15 +0100

Dear Stevan,

I hope you will consider putting this on the list. I think it raises a significant potential problem. If a paper is withdrawn following further review, as this one has been, and it is already on an institutional or other server (as a peer reviewed paper...) then who is responsible for withdrawing it, or is there any obligation to withdraw? In general terms is there any mechanism in place to 'manage' papers which have been withdrawn (for whatever reason) but are posted in multiple locations?

 From The Registry -

>> The journal Science yesterday announced it would take the highly unusual step of retracting a paper written by disgraced stem cell researcher Hwang Woo-suk and colleagues as the scandal surrounding Hwang's suspect study on tailored embryonic stem cells refuses to lie down.

According to Reuters, Science has got permission from everyone named on the May 2005 paper to retract the document. The journal said in a statement: "To ensure that the wording of the retraction reflects the final conclusions of the Seoul National University (SNU) investigation, Science will finalize the retraction text and proceed with the final steps of the retraction process only after the SNU investigation is completed next week.

"Science hopes this approach will yield a retraction that will convey accurately as much information as possible to the scientific community."<<

BTW in a recent issue of Le Monde a distnguished French researcher (and personal friend of Hwang)commented on the limitations of the peer review process vis a vis situations such as the failure of the Hwang material - he made the point that, in areas such as stem cell work, peer review can only be 'good' if the reviewer re-did the work....

Bye, Barry
Received on Fri Jan 06 2006 - 20:06:02 GMT

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