Accountability in Research

Publisher: Taylor & Francis


Accountability in Research: Policies and Quality Assurance is devoted to the examination and critical analysis of systems for maximizing integrity in the conduct of research. It provides an interdisciplinary, international forum for the development of new procedures, standards and policies to encourage the ethical conduct of research for enhancing the validity of research results. The journal publishes original empirical, methodological, policy and theoretical papers, cases studies, conference reports and book reviews that address issues of integrity and accountability in research. Book reviews are published periodically on topics relevant to the journal's scope. Accountability in Research seeks to serve a broad range of scientists and administrators in academia, industry and government. While relevant to any discipline, the journal focuses in particular on biotechnology, chemistry, medicine, pharmacology, toxicology, pathology, environmental science, and clinical trials.

  • Impact factor
  • 5-year impact
  • Cited half-life
  • Immediacy index
  • Eigenfactor
  • Article influence
  • Website
    Accountability in Research: Policies and Quality Assurance website
  • Other titles
    Accountability in research (Online), Accountability in research
  • ISSN
  • OCLC
  • Material type
    Document, Periodical, Internet resource
  • Document type
    Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

Taylor & Francis

  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • Some individual journals may have policies prohibiting pre-print archiving
    • On author's personal website or departmental website immediately
    • On institutional repository or subject-based repository after either 12 months embargo for STM, Behavioural Science and Public Health Journals or 18 months embargo for SSH journals
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • On a non-profit server
    • Published source must be acknowledged
    • Must link to publisher version
    • Set statements to accompany deposits (see policy)
    • The publisher will deposit in on behalf of authors to a designated institutional repository including PubMed Central, where a deposit agreement exists with the repository
    • STM: Science, Technology and Medicine
    • SSH: Social Science and Humanities
    • Publisher last contacted on 25/03/2014
    • 'Taylor & Francis (Psychology Press)' is an imprint of 'Taylor & Francis'
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Clinical vaccine trials have been lacking in the pediatric population due to lower consent rate of the parents. We assessed characteristics of the parents, and motives and barriers underlying the decision process. The results of the questionnaire were evaluated by multivariate analysis. Parents who opted in were younger and more often employed than the parents who opted out. The most important motives were receiving detailed information about trial and benefits to human health. The qualified education of medical community and public about the rationale and benefits of trials is essential for opt-in.
    Accountability in Research 01/2015; 22(1):1-13.
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    ABSTRACT: Science affects multiple basic sectors of society. Therefore, the findings made in science impact what takes place at a commercial level. More specifically, errors in the literature, incorrect findings, fraudulent data, poorly written scientific reports, or studies that cannot be reproduced not only serve as a burden on tax-payers' money, but they also serve to diminish public trust in science and its findings. Therefore, there is every need to fortify the validity of data that exists in the science literature, not only to build trust among peers, and to sustain that trust, but to reestablish trust in the public and private academic sectors that are witnessing a veritable battle-ground in the world of science publishing, in some ways spurred by the rapid evolution of the open access (OA) movement. Even though many science journals, traditional and OA, claim to be peer reviewed, the truth is that different levels of peer review occur, and in some cases no, insufficient, or pseudo-peer review takes place. This ultimately leads to the erosion of quality and importance of science, allowing essentially anything to become published, provided that an outlet can be found. In some cases, predatory OA journals serve this purpose, allowing papers to be published, often without any peer review or quality control. In the light of an explosion of such cases in predatory OA publishing, and in severe inefficiencies and possible bias in the peer review of even respectable science journals, as evidenced by the increasing attention given to retractions, there is an urgent need to reform the way in which authors, editors, and publishers conduct the first line of quality control, the peer review. One way to address the problem is through post-publication peer review (PPPR), an efficient complement to traditional peer-review that allows for the continuous improvement and strengthening of the quality of science publishing. PPPR may also serve as a way to renew trust in scientific findings by correcting the literature. This article explores what is broadly being said about PPPR in the literature, so as to establish awareness and a possible first-tier prototype for the sciences for which such a system is undeveloped or weak.
    Accountability in Research 01/2015; 22(1):22-40.
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    ABSTRACT: For 6,000 years, humans have known about smelter hazards. Yet these metals threats continue. Why? This commentary provides one preliminary answer. It (1) summarizes the history of smelter pollution and (2) suggests that at least 3 problems-especially flawed smelter-polluter science-allow continuing health threats. It (3) illustrates this flawed science by using one of the most dangerous of U.S. former smelters, in DePue, Illinois. There polluters are avoiding violating the law yet trying to minimize smelter-caused health threats, thus clean-up costs, by using two questionable scientific claims. The causality-denial claim denies that smelter metals cause neurodegenerative diseases. The biomagnification-denial claim denies that food-chain biomagnification of smelter metals can put citizens at risk. The commentary shows both claims err, and (4) suggests ways to address flawed smelter science and resulting health harms.
    Accountability in Research 01/2015; 22(1):41-60.
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    ABSTRACT: The case-based approach to learning is popular among many applied fields. However, results of case-based education vary widely on case content and case presentation. This study examined two aspects of case-based education-outcome valence and case elaboration methods-in a two-day case-based Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) ethics education program. Results suggest that outcome information is an integral part of a quality case. Furthermore, valence consistent outcomes may have certain advantages over mixed valence outcome information. Finally, students enjoy and excel working with case material, and the use of elaborative interrogation techniques can significantly improve internally-focused ethical sensemaking strategies associated with personal biases, constraints, and emotions.
    Accountability in Research 01/2014; 21(5):265-299.
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    ABSTRACT: Citation indexes such as journal impact factor are increasingly used to evaluate the quality of a scholarly work and/or assess one's scientific contributions. However, this simplistic approach has increasingly been refuted with publication gaming and incorrect applications to rank one's academic significance. These indexes are being game not only by researchers but also subtly by journal editors. Although the attention drawn from the public pertaining to such misbehaviors from editors is limited, the associated implications cannot be undermined. In this article, the focus will be on the motivations, impacts, and lessons learnt from how single highly cited article can have on the reactions from and the reputation of two academic journals: Folia Phoniatrica et Logopaedica and Acta Crystallographica Section A. For the former, it adopted an unconventional approach to improve its prominence in the field while the latter reiterates the correct and the original intent of citation indexes, as well as the importance of good editorial governance. From these incidents, few considerations are proposed to assist in minimising the recurrence of possible publication gaming in the editorial process. However, the inherent ethical values of an individual should still take precedence of any preventive measure.
    Accountability in Research 02/2013; 20(2):93-106.
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    ABSTRACT: Studies have indicated that academic research has become increasingly complex and multidisciplinary. There seems to be an increasing trend of multiple author articles published across most journals. As the field of biomedical engineering also encompasses multidisciplinary-based knowledge, it is interesting to understand the authorship trend over time. In this study, six journals were carefully chosen from the Journal Citation Report of the Thomson Scientific based on predefined criteria (year 1999 to 2008). The data pertaining to authorships for the articles published in these journals were then acquired from the PubMed database. The results show that there is a general upward trend for the number of author per article, but it is not significant (p > .01) despite a 64.5% increase in the total number of article published in the six chosen journals. Thus, the expected increase is not observed in this field, and it may be due to the stringent guidelines by journals in defining the contributions of an author. Particularly, contributing factors like the impact of authorship irregularities is discussed herein.
    Accountability in Research 03/2011; 18(2):91-101.
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    ABSTRACT: For academic research outcomes, an important bibliometric scoring termed as the journal impact factor (JIF) is used when assessment of the quality of research is required. No known study has been conducted to explore the bibliographical trends of 'Medicine, General & Internal' journals indexed by the annual Journal Citation Reports. Data from the Journal Citation Reports and Web of Science database were extracted to formulate a comprehensive analysis. In this study, the trends of 15 journals (5 top ranked and 10 low ranked; 5 English and 5 non-English based) were selected and analysed over a 9-year period (starting from year 1999 to 2007). Using the year 1999 as the base year, the results showed that the JIF rose significantly for the selected top ranked journals (up to 180.9%) while the low ranked ones slipped in their JIF value (down to -44.4%). The observed upward or downward trend was caused by a combination of other bibliographical measures like citations, number of citable, and total items published. It is postulated that changes in bibliographical trends can be classified as editorial and non-editorial influences. The impacts of these influences on the 15 selected journals over the 9-year period were also discussed retrospectively.
    Accountability in Research 06/2009; 16(3):127-152.
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    ABSTRACT: The simplest and widely used assessment of academic research and researchers is the journal impact factor (JIF). However, the JIF may exhibit patterns that are skewed towards journals that publish high number of non-research items and short turnover research. Moreover, there are concerns as the JIF is often used as a comparison for journals from different disciplines. In this study, the JIF computation of eight top ranked journals from four different subject categories was analyzed. The analysis reveals that most of the published items (>65%) in the science disciplines were nonresearch items while fewer such items (<22%) were observed in engineering-based journals. The single regression analysis confirmed that there is correlation (R(2) > or = .99) in the number of published items or citations received over the two-year period used in the JIF calculation amongst the eight selected journals. A weighted factor computation is introduced to compensate for the smaller journals and journals that publish longer turnover research. It is hoped that the approach can provide a comprehensive assessment of the quality of a journal regardless of the disciplinary field.
    Accountability in Research 02/2009; 16(1):1-12.
  • Accountability in Research 10/2008; 15(4):205-8.
  • Source
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    ABSTRACT: Federal regulations governing human subjects research do not address key questions raised by incidental neuroimaging findings, including the scope of a researcher's disclosure with respect to the possibility of incidental findings and the question whether a researcher has an affirmative legal cuty to seek, detect, and report incidental findings. The scope of researcher duties may, however, be mapped with reference to common law doctrine, including fiduciary, tort, contract, and bailment theories of liability.
    Accountability in Research 10/2008; 15(4):242-61.
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    ABSTRACT: Little guidance is currently available for handling disputes between research mentors and students when working with shared data. This article analyzes how the ethical guidelines from the American Psychological Association (APA), the Office of Research Integrity (ORI), and the American Educational Research Association (AERA) can inform common disputes in this area. Additional insights about the nature of the research relationship are derived from contract and copyright law. Practice guidelines are proposed to safeguard student and faculty welfare in research collaboration, and recommendations are provided to help prevent and resolve disputes between students and faculty.
    Accountability in Research 04/2008; 15(2):105-31.
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    ABSTRACT: In this case study from litigation, we show how ghostwriting of clinical trial results can contribute to the manipulation of data to favor the study medication. Study 329 for paroxetine pediatric use was negative for efficacy and positive for harm. Yet the ghostwritten publication from this study concluded that paroxetine provided evidence of efficacy and safety and continues to be influential. Despite the role of named authors in revisions of the manuscript, the sponsor company remained in control of the message.
    Accountability in Research 01/2008; 15(3):152-67.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This article reviews a range of issues associated with the commercialization of biomedical research and speculates on how these issues might apply to the neuroscience context. Drawing on existing studies of the impact of research commercialization activities on various areas of biotechnology research, the authors explore normative benchmarks for assessing and resolving issues likely to arise from the commercialization of neuroscientific research, including such topics as patenting, marketing pressures, and representations of research prospects.
    Accountability in Research 01/2008; 15(4):303-20.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Issues of disclosure arise in neuroscientific research during the informed consent process, whenever incidental findings are identified, and when study results are generated. The possibility of disclosure of incidental findings and/or research results may raise informational expectations on the part of subjects and may alter a study's risk:benefit ratio. We recommend that the informed consent process address this potential consequence of research participation, and specify the conditions under which particular types of information will be offered, the conditions under which information may not be disclosed, and any provisions for helping subjects make sense of the information to be disclosed.
    Accountability in Research 01/2008; 15(4):226-41.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In anticipation of increasing interest in public engagement, this article seeks to expand the current discussion in the neuroethics literature concerning what public engagement on issues related to neuroscience might entail and how they could be envisioned. It notes that the small amount of available neuroethics literature related to public engagement has principally discussed only communication/education or made calls for dialogue without exploring what this might entail on a practical level. The article links across three seemingly disparate examples-salmon, biobanks, and neuroethics-to consider and clarify the need for public engagement in neuroscience.
    Accountability in Research 01/2008; 15(4):283-302.
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    ABSTRACT: The implications of the institutional review board (IRB) system's growing purview are examined. Among the issues discussed are whether IRBs are censoring research and whether the IRB review process fundamentally alters the research that is being conducted. The intersection between IRB review and free speech is also explored. In general, it is argued that the review system for human subjects research (HSR) should be modified in order to limit the scope of IRB review.
    Accountability in Research 01/2008; 15(3):188-204.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Despite requirements for Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) training, little is known about how much this training actually influences the thinking and behaviors of participants. Interview-based qualitative research methods were used to study the reactions of Ph.D. students and postdoctoral fellows to what was taught in an RCR course. For trainees with limited prior RCR experience, or who agreed with what was taught, it was relatively easy to influence their attitudes and how they thought they would use the new information in the future. However, if their prior experiences or existing knowledge conflicted with what was taught they resisted and often rejected new ideas that were presented. Interviews also revealed the tremendously complex process trainees must undergo trying to resolve or integrate all of the different perspectives they receive on RCR from other sources. These results revealed the importance of viewing RCR training from the perspective of learning theory and how prior knowledge influences what people learn. The results also support the need for periodic rather than one-time RCR training to counter the often conflicting views and practices young scientists experience in real-life research settings.
    Accountability in Research 01/2008; 15(1):30-62.