Norway: Harsh criticism after research manipulation

30.06.2006
After the research manipulation case which was made public in early 2006, a Commission of Inquiry was established, chaired by Swedish professor Anders Ekbom. The Commission recommends that the doctoral dissertation be rescinded as well as some of his later work.
The Commission was appointed in January when a researcher at Rikshospitalet-Radiumhospitalet (RRHF) admitted to have manipulated data for a scientific article published in The Lancet in 2005. Professor Anders Ekbom of Karolinska Institutet chaired the Commission.

RRHF and the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Oslo asked the external commission to examine the entire scientific production of the researcher, the possible participation of the co-authors in the manipulation and the role of the hospital as employer.

Dissertation rescinded
The Commission states that "most of the scientific production of the researcher appears to be invalid due to manipulation and fabrication of raw data." That is why the Commission thinks his dissertation should be rescinded, as well as several of his later articles.

Harsh criticism of the employers
The Commission critisizises the University of Oslo and RRHF for lack of control of the researcher‘s doctoral project. RRHF also is criticized for poor researcher training with a view to the rules for handling patient material, preliminary assessments of research projects and authorship. The hospital was also criticized for a lack of leadership and routines designed to expose and deal with non-conformance with its rules of procedure.

"No one can fail to understand that the fabrication of research data is a bitter pill to swallow for the country‘s leading research hospital. We are grateful for the report and accept its conclusions. Now we will do everything in our power to learn from the criticism. We intend to roll up our sleeves and turn this situation into something that will eventually be positive for the hospital and for all medical research", stated Strategy Director Stein Vaaler at RRHF.

Read more at RRHF.
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