Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Fake research publications

Professors in universities spend a lot of their time doing research and publishing their results in academic conferences and journals.  Organising such conferences can also be lucrative business because there are plenty of researchers who are happy to pay the registration fees, to get their papers published.  Part of the consequence is a proliferation of conferences - and papers.  It has long been known that some such papers are of low quality. Some of them are not even real papers written by human beings.

Several years ago (in 2005), researchers at MIT released a paper-generated machine, SCIgen, that can produce fake computer science papers. Since then, more than 120 such papers have been found to have been accepted and published in conferences.  Recently there was a report on Scientific American / Nature on the phenomenon. 

There is another interesting observation in the report,  “Most of the conferences took place in China, and most of the fake papers have authors with Chinese affiliations.”  The report did not explain further why that was the case.  However, a number of possible and obvious reasons come to mind quickly. 



1 comment:

Kelvin Leong said...

not surprised but better than fake foods :)