Hervé Maisonneuve, Université de Lyon, France, suggested “a standard retraction form” as the topic for discussion at this Forum.
Retractions are often used as a proxy for publication quality. Retractions have been studied with cohorts of various sizes over differing time periods.
Time after time these studies have pointed out that there is often no clearly stated reason for retraction and when given these reasons are often lacking in detail. The difficulty with interpretation has never been quantified, however an absence of explanation was cited for 5– 12% of retraction notices.
Following our study on retraction notices issued in 2013, we recommended the use of a retraction template. This template would meet the pre-requisites for the COPE retraction guidelines using very simple tick boxes: who is retracting the article, the reason for the retraction and history of errata/ expressions of concern. Then, a free text box would allow the editor to add any information they consider useful.
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