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Letter from the COPE Chair: April 2022

The world has been left reeling following Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine. As a community of publishers, journal editors, and human beings, we are appalled and horrified by the violence we see in Ukraine and we support an immediate end to this conflict. Many publishers and journals have made clear statements and policy changes in reaction to this conflict, especially relating to the broad international commercial sales of products and services. As an organisation focused on integrity in research and its publication, COPE has reiterated our position, first published in 2013 in response to sanctions imposed against Iran, to uphold the understanding that the consideration and communication of research results has no geopolitical boundaries and that editorial decisions should be independent of the origin of the manuscript. Read our position statement in full.

I would like to thank those who have submitted guest editorials and opinion pieces to Digest and Member Insight. They have been informative and interesting. The newest guest article on working together to detect integrity issues is by Joris van Rossum, STM’s Director of Research Integrity.  In this editorial, Joris discusses the need for a collaborative approach to respond to the threat of paper mills and the intent of STM to develop and launch a platform to support the detection of integrity issues. COPE is looking for more submissions from our members to foster communications about issues of interest to you. 

In May, COPE has several events. COPE will be hosting a virtual Seminar to introduce membership for universities and research institutes.  The keynote will be given by Professor John B Thompson, Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Cambridge and author of Book Wars: The Digital Revolution in Publishing. More information will follow shortly. COPE will also be well represented at the World Conference on Research Integrity. I will be moderating a session on “When and how to report to institutions, journals, publishers, or elsewhere.” This session will explore the available resources and the barriers to reporting issues.

Finally, back in January, COPE co-hosted a fact-finding workshop with UKRI on sharing information about allegations or cases of research misconduct between journals/publishers, institutions, and funders. This was one of three workshops, each focusing on one of the three groups listed previously. UKRI, a major public research funder in the UK, has drafted a synthesis report based on the output of the workshops, and they intend to release the report soon.

Dan Kulp, COPE Chair



COPE Digest newsletter: April 2022

In our latest guest article, find out more about a project to detect integrity issues and prevent them entering the scientific record more quickly. Publishers can sign up to hear more about the project or join one of the working groups.

We publish a new case discussion written to develop guidance and advice around a recent COPE Forum case: Is there a time limit for submitting a critique of a published article? More cases discussed at the March Forum are now available to read.

A recent addition to COPE's translated resources is the Spanish language version of the Retraction Guidelines: Guías para la retracción

Read COPE Digest