Who Rules the Ruler? On the Misconduct of Journal Editors
- 164 Downloads
There are very few (published) accounts of editorial misconduct, and those that do exist are almost exclusively focused on medicine-related areas. In the present article we detail a case of editorial misconduct in a rather underexplored domain, the social sciences. This case demonstrates that although legal systems provide different instruments of protection to avoid, compensate for, and punish misconduct on the part of journal editors, the social and economic power unbalance between authors and publishers suggests the importance of alternative solutions before or instead of bringing a lawsuit to court. It puts forward strong arguments in favour of the need for effective regulatory bodies so as to achieve and maintain a culture of research integrity by all involved in the process.
KeywordsScientific research Ethics Editorial misconduct Law Regulatory bodies
JEL CodeZ0 K11 K12 K42
We would like to express our most sincere gratitude to all the journal editors who thoroughly analyzed the case described here and kindly share their views on the matters and suggested some actions. We also thank the two referees for their comments and pertinent suggestions.
Conflicts of interest
The corresponding author of the present article was one of the three complainant co-authors.
- Ascensão, J. O. (2008). Direito Civil. Direito de Autor e Direitos Conexos, reprint. Coimbra: Coimbra Editora.Google Scholar
- Beatson, J. (2002). Anson’s law of contract (28th ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Brehmer, N. (1992). Wille und Erklärung. Zu Geltungsgrund, Tatbestand und Zurechnung der Willenserklärung, Baden-Baden, Deutschland: Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft.Google Scholar
- Carbonnier, J. (2000). Droit Civil. 4. Les obligations, Paris, France: Presses Universitaires de France.Google Scholar
- Cornish, W., & Llewelyn, D. (2007). Intellectual property: Patents, copyright, trade marks and allied rights (6th ed.). London: Thomson Sweet & Maxwell.Google Scholar
- D’Agostino, G. (2005). Freelance authors for free: Globalisation of publishing, convergence of copyright contracts and divergence of judicial reasoning. In F. Macmillan (Ed.), New directions in copyright law, vol. 1 (pp. 166–215). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
- Ficsor, M. (2008). Teaching copyright and related rights. In Y. Takagi, L. Allman, & M. Sinjela (Eds.), Teaching of intellectual property. Principles and methods (pp. 33–62). Cambridge: WIPO Academy, Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Fikentscher, W., & Heinemann, A. (2006). Schuldrecht (10th ed.). Berlin: De Gruyter Recht.Google Scholar
- Laithier, Y-M. (2004). Étude comparative des sanctions de l’inexécution du contrat, Paris: L.G.D.J.Google Scholar
- Lando, O., & Beale, H. (2000). Principles of European Contract Law, Parts I and II, prepared by The Commission of European Contract Law. The Hague: Kluwer Law International.Google Scholar
- Light, D., & Warburton, R. (2008). In focus: “ethical standards for healthcare journal editors: a case report and recommendations”. Harvard Health Policy Review, 9(1), 58–67.Google Scholar
- Peel, E. (2007). Treitel on The Law of Contract (12th ed.). London: Sweet & Maxwell.Google Scholar
- Phillips, J., & Firth, A. (1995). Introduction to Intellectual Property Law (3rd ed.). London: Butterworths.Google Scholar
- Pinto, C. M. (2005). In A. P. Monteiro & P. M. Pinto (Eds.), Teoria geral do direito civil (4th ed.). Coimbra: Coimbra Editora.Google Scholar
- Roppo, V. (2001). Il contratto, Trattato di Diritto Privato a cura di Giovanni Iudica e Paolo Zatti. Milano: Dott. A. Giuffrè Editore.Google Scholar
- Sanctis, V., & Fabiani, M. (2007). I contratti di diritto di autore (2nd ed.). Milano: Dott. A. Giuffrè Editore.Google Scholar
- Smith, R. (1997). Editorials: Misconduct in research: editors respond. The Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) is formed. British Medical Journal, 315, 201–202.Google Scholar
- Smith, R. (2008). A ripping yarn of editorial misconduct. BMJ Group Blogs Tuesday, October 21st, 2008, in http://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2008/10/21/richard-smith-a-ripping-yarn-of-editorial-misconduct/. Accessed 24 Oct 2009.
- Stamatoudi, I. (2002). Copyright and multimedia products. A comparative analysis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Teilmann, S. (2005). Justifications for copyright: The evolution of le droit moral. In F. Macmillan (Ed.), New directions in copyright law, vol. 1 (Vol. 1, pp. 73–87). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
- Treitel, G. (2003). Treitel on The Law of Contract (11th ed.). London: Thomson Sweet & Maxwell.Google Scholar
- Zweigert, K., & Kötz, H. (1998). An introduction to comparative law, translated by Tony Weir (3rd ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar