Dealing with concerns about the integrity of published research

'This guidance presents practical considerations for managing scenarios where editors are contacted with ethical concerns about the integrity of published research.

In recent years, reporting of ethical concerns about research publications has become more prevalent, and the issues identified have become more complex. This includes situations where multiple concerns are raised simultaneously to multiple journals, from anonymous or named individuals, and which deal with a range of issues concerning the integrity of the published research. In response to changes in the terminology being used in scholarly publishing, the discussion refers to ‘people who raise concerns’ rather than the older term ‘whistleblowers’. The guidance highlights the ways in which issues are raised and provides recommendations for responding to these concerns. COPE welcomes comments which add to the ongoing debate about the topic.’