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Scientiae Studia

versión impresa ISSN 1678-3166versión On-line ISSN 2316-8994


OLIVEIRA, Marcos BARBOSA DE. The epidemic of misconduct in science: the collapse of the moralizer treatment. Sci. stud. [online]. 2015, vol.13, n.4, pp.867-897. ISSN 2316-8994.

The article deals with the proliferation of violations of ethical norms of science, that started to develop a few decades ago. It will be referred to as "the epidemic". The most important types of these violations are varieties of fraud (mainly falsification and fabrication of empirical data), and such forms of author misconduct as plagiarism, self-plagiarism, etc. The article is divided into six sections. In the first, the topic is introduced and some terminology clarified. In the second, evidence is presented which corroborates the existence of the epidemic. The third deals with the reaction to the epidemic, by characterizing its dynamics in terms of being dominated by conflict between two positions: the moralizing one - which promotes the application of the moralizing treatment to combat the epidemic; and the negationist one - which tends to deny the existence of the epidemic, and resists the moralizing measures. The fourth explores the causes of the epidemic. A distinction is introduced between productivism and productionism, and an analysis is proposed of the ways productivism fosters violations of ethical norms of science. The fifth consists of a critique of the moralizing treatment, based on its inadequacies, mainly its inefficacy. The conclusion points to an alternative to the moralizing treatment.

Palabras clave : Misconduct; Fraud; Plagiarism; Research integrity; Retraction; Code of ethics; Productivism; Judicialization.

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