The cause that I would like to discuss is that of Frank Sauer. He was found to have falsified data. He got some good mileage out of the falsified data too, two publications in Science and five grant applications. There was also a follow-up to this case posted as well. Sauer tried to make the case that he was hacked, and his figures were altered by activists who don’t agree with his research. His evidence was found to be rather flimsy and potentially fake. His punishment was upheld by a judge.
Academic misconduct like this always begs the question as to why? I get that it is a highly competitive world in Academia, but is faking data really the solution? Especially if your intended target is Science. I do wish they would elaborate as to how the investigation was began. Was it a student of his, or did the peer review process catch him? If it was student, that is a brave move. His actions likely have a trickle-down effect on any students of his. Will they be able to continue with their research or will they have to terminate their programs? It is possible that they will also be associated with the stigma of his forgery. Long story short, don’t fake data because other people are relying you for their jobs.
2 Replies to “Ethics Case”
True — why people make up data is beyond me. People become so overly ambitious that they lose site of ethical practices and good research. Did they revoke all of his papers in Science?
I did a crappy job of reading this. He was published in Nature and Science. Both publications retracted his articles.