David Cox (David Cox), the co-director of the famous artificial intelligence laboratory in Cambridge, Massachusetts, found something strange when he scanned the online computer science bibliography in December – his name and three names The Chinese researchers he knew were listed as authors on two papers he did not know.
At first, he didn̵
It is not clear how common this academic fraud may be, or why someone lists people who do not participate in the research as co-authors. By looking at other papers written by the same Chinese writer, WIRED found a third example in which photos and biographies of MIT researchers are listed under fictitious names.
Cox said this may be to increase publishing opportunities or gain academic reputation. He said that he had heard rumors that Chinese scholars received financial rewards for publishing with researchers from well-known Western institutions.
Cox and others believe that, for whatever reason, it highlights the weaknesses in academic publishing. This also reflects the general lack of rules surrounding the publication of AI and computer science papers, especially since many papers are published online without prior review.
Cox said: “If the public’s trust in peer review is not destroyed, these things will not be so harmful.” “This really shouldn’t happen.”
Cox is the head of the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab, which is dedicated to studying the basic challenges of AI. He was nominated as the co-author of two papers in the niche magazine “Cluster Computing”. A paper deals with a machine learning method used to protect mobile networks from cyber attacks. The other one outlines the networking scheme of Macau’s Intelligent Transportation System.
A paper on another intelligent transportation project identified by WIRED is listed as the author of “Bill Franks” and is said to be a professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. There is no Bill Franks in the MIT Department of Electrical Engineering. The paper was published in “IEEE Transactions in Industrial Informatics” and showed the resume and photos of a real MIT professor, Saman Amarasinghe, under a false name. Amara Singh did not respond to a request for comment via email and an MIT spokesperson.
“The article has been withdrawn”
All three papers have since been retracted, and the publisher said they are under investigation. But Cox was angry because it was obviously false that these magazines would publish at first. He said that IEEE quickly withdrew the document listing Bill Franks.
IEEE Corporate Communications and Brand Marketing Director Monika Stickel said: “Our investigation found evidence of violations of IEEE policy, and in accordance with our editing procedures, the article has been withdrawn.”
But Cox said that until he threatened to take legal action, Springer, the publisher of cluster computing, naturally removed his name from the two papers and published a retracted manuscript. Someone told him that the journal had received an email confirming him as the author, even though the email was sent through a Hotmail address.
“The fundamental challenge we face is that releases have been based on trust for decades,” said Suzanne Farley, Director of Research Integrity at Springer Nature. “Unfortunately, it is clear that some individuals and groups intend to deceive and abuse this trust, as well as situations where there are honest errors and misunderstandings.”
Farley said that sometimes scholars do not use institutional email addresses, in which case we will try to verify that the address and the author are legitimate.
According to Retraction Watch, a website that tracks academic fraud cases, one of the Chinese writers, Daming Li, a researcher affiliated with the City University of Macau, blamed a junior writer, Yao Xiang, who was connected to a company. Zhuhai Dahengqin Technology Development Co., Ltd. Li said in the publication that Yao Ming added Cox’s name after “hearing his good idea,” and said the researcher was fired. Li and Yao did not respond to emailed requests for comment.
Rui Rui, a professor at the University of San Diego, who studies Chinese academia, said that the author may want to “fake international cooperation, which is encouraged by the university.”
“Make the look of an academic dialogue”
According to Retraction Watch, in an earlier case of academic fraud, more than 1,000 papers were retracted between 2012 and 2015 because one or more peer reviewers proved to be false.
Cox said the incident showed that some published academic papers were of poor quality. He said: “In a sense, I think what happened to me is that the system is working in the “as it should be.” “The whole thing is creating the appearance of academic dialogue. “
Microsoft and Northwestern University researcher Brent Hecht (Brent Hecht) focused on ethical issues surrounding computer science, and he said the lax approach is more extensive. Many papers were first published on arXiv without peer review. arXiv is a server where researchers can read the latest works. He pointed out that in the absence of peer review, the affiliation of the authors of these papers can serve as a representative of legitimacy and quality. Hecht said: “Science is based on the credit economy system. Therefore, if credit is allocated or obtained improperly, everyone will suffer losses.”
This story originally appeared on wired.com.