, Volume 99, Issue 2, pp 145-151

First online:

What to do about fraud charges in science; or, will the Burt affair ever end?

  • Franz SamelsonAffiliated withPsychology Department, Kansas State University

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Shortly after the death, in 1971, of Cyril Burt, a prominent British psychologist, the authenticity of his accounts of intelligence test results from the largest reported sample of MZA's (monozygotic twins reared apart) was challenged. Charges of fraud by Burt's critics and countercharges by his supporters started an acrimonious battle of words in journals, books, and the mass media that seesawed over the decades. It is still not resolved. The problematic ways in which the scientific community and its major organizations and journal editors have dealt or failed to deal with the problem are discussed.

Burt affair editorial responsibility intelligence IQ heritability scientificfraud