Academic vita fraud?

recent study of 180 academic curricula vitae found that 56 percent that claimed to have at least one publication contained at least one unverifiable or inaccurate publication, and it suggests that CV falsification could be much more common than scholars committed to professional integrity might hope. The study is small — the 56 percent reflects only 79 CVs, of 141 that claimed to have at least one publication. The researchers behind the study make no presumption as to whether the errors were intentional.

Here is further information from Megan Zahneis.


Someone should do a similar study of curricula vitae for candidates for high level university administrator positions.

It's the "unverifiable" that gets me. The definition of "published" isn't a single thing. I've published in places that, if you don't know where to look, you'll never find--minutes from meetings in fields with few members, for example. I can find it in five minutes, and the book is available in the museum library where it was published. But distribution is limited. It's even worse for PhD dissertations, where some countries consider "published" to mean you sent a copy to several libraries (makes them a PAIN to find).

Without knowing WHY it's "unverifiable" it's premature to say that the publications are in any way fraudulent.

Actually, the data in the article shows that most of unverifiable publications was in identified journals - not in exotic monographs... BTW the ratio of unverifiable to inaccurate was 2:1

So was mine. Proceedings of a museum--standard stuff in my field. "Identified journals" doesn't mean "easy to find". This becomes more true the further back you go in time.

"Minor misrepresentations" as these cited might help explain some of Sen. Warren's biographical and genealogical enthusiasms, and vice versa (nota bene: by her example Harvard faculty are plainly implicated).

The sadder news is that this academic revelation comes this late in the game of academic and professional careerism: have editorial standards truly fallen so low at the Journal for Post-Secondary Training?

How corrupt could our academic elites have permitted themselves to become? What other kinds of academic corruption lurk in our hallowed cathedrals of learning?

STILL not too late to abolish the NCAA for its roles in corrupting post-secondary programs of all sorts.

Step 1: Stop pretending that publishing something is an accomplishment.

They want media to think it is lies about having written things. In reality it is probably typos or published in proceedings.

Reading the comments at this blog reminds me of an experience many years ago when I was a young lawyer. The brother of a lawyer in my firm worked at the public defender's office. When we got together for beers after work, he often referred to the Toddi defense. I assumed it was something technical, like Miranda. The toddi defense? The other dude did it.

I'm sure that made perfect sense in your head, before you started typing. But the results for the rest of us.... definitely not so good.

It helps if you visualize him as Abraham Simpson.

“I had an onion on my belt, which was the style at the time”

Who ever thought that someones self reported and never looked at declarations are full of errors? Especially when the errors have benefits?

I'm shocked, SHOCKED! that such a thing could happen in the hallowed halls of the academy.

I dunno. They mix innocuous stuff* with more serious errors, so the 56% or whatever is hard to judge.
*e.g., pretty common to say "in press" is published, when the paper is on the journal website and takes 1-2 years to actually come out in paper.

I'm not as concerned about the fake papers that don't exist as I am about the fake papers that do.

How many claimed to be Injuns?

I call BS on this study. If unverified includes "forthcoming" and "accepted" papers, that ins't fraud. That's just normal, given the long lag time between acceptance and actual print.


how the fuck did they get away with this

summers the harvard sociologist says sociology studies are not too be
interpreted literally they are more like parables!

I suspect the problem is bloated university bureaucracies - the CVs are the screened by some HR department "expert" who doesn't know the field and can be easily fooled by false publications. Once it's received by a department hiring committee, everyone assumes that CV has been carefully checked for truthfulness.

That isn't how academic hiring works. HR does not screen CVs first.

As an academic dean, this is disappointing if true.

It's merely "unverifiable". It's not like they falsely claimed to be Native American or something.

If this is a reference to Warren, note that her specific claim regarding the (very small) degree of Native American Indian ancestry she has was verified by the DNA test she took, even if that led to much ridiculing of her and did not help her at all professionally. But your apparent claim of "falsely claimed" is itself false.

I have relatives (by marriage) who are members of the Cherokee nation, and their ancestors are on the Dawes Rolls. Excuse me while I loudly yawn in Elizabeth Warren's direction.

Hey, there's a silver lining to this.

If people really lies or misrepresents a publication in a self-promoting in their CV, well.....they're just giving away for free the ammo to take them down.

Let's hope that this study does not succeed in obscuring the fact that many or most university-minted Americans today are only almost as well-trained as high school grads of, say, the 1950s.

The "crisis" in post-secondary training thus seems much less a matter of "misrepresentation" in faculty CVs as whether graduates armed with baccalaureate degrees, graduate degrees, or doctorates are able to properly and accurately "represent" data in their respective domains (the latter query could be asked of their academic faculty as well).

By now it may've become time to ask whether post-secondary curricula offer adequately accurate epistemic perspectives for lives being lived in this century.

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