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Why researchers sometimes cheat and what to do about it

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Scientific research is essential. That’s one of the teachings of the pandemic. However, researchers are humans and as most humans they have flaws and sometimes go astray. It is a minority, but it happens that researchers fake their results and make things up. Luckily there are people who have devoted their lives to keeping science honest and clean. Our special guest is one of them. She identifies scientific misconduct and fraud.

Our host Cat chats with Dr Elisabeth Bik. Elisabeth has made herself a name in checking scientific papers for fraud and misconduct, she calls herself a scientific integrity consultant, in other words, she is a private research detective. Elisabeth talks about why researchers sometimes cheat and what she does to find them out.

Unfortunately, for most academics the rule is to ‘publish or perish’. Sometimes the pressure of publishing is so intense that researchers are tempted to fake their data and publish falsified results. It’s our guest’s mission to find those fake results out and have them flagged to make science cleaner and more truthful.

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Elisabeth runs two blogs:

Elisabeth’s recommendations of the most recent microbiome research: https://microbiomedigest.com/

About her work as scientific fraud ‘detective’: https://scienceintegritydigest.com/