In Their Own Words: Research Misconduct from the Perspective of Researchers in Malaysian Universities

Angelina P. Olesen, Latifah Amin, Zurina Mahadi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Published data and studies on research misconduct, which focuses on researchers in Malaysia, is still lacking, therefore, we decided that this was an area for investigation. This study provides qualitative results for the examined issues through series of in-depth interviews with 21 researchers and lecturers in various universities in Malaysia. The aims of this study were to investigate the researchers’ opinions and perceptions regarding what they considered to be research misconduct, their experience with such misconduct, and the factors that contribute to research misconduct. Our findings suggest that the most common research misconducts that are currently being witnessed in Malaysian universities are plagiarism and authorship disputes, however, researchers seldom report incidents of research misconduct because it takes too much time, effort and work to report them, and some are just afraid of repercussions when they do report it. This suggests possible loopholes in the monitoring system, which may allow some researchers to bypass it and engage in misconduct. This study also highlights the structural and individual factors as the most influential factors when it comes to research misconduct besides organizational, situational and cultural factors. Finally, this study highlights the concerns of all participants regarding the ‘publish or perish’ pressure that they believe would lead to a hostile working environment, thus enhancing research misconduct, as researchers tend to think about their own performance rather than that of whole team or faculty. Consequently this weakens the interpersonal relationships among researchers, which may compromise the teaching and supervision of junior researchers and research students.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
JournalScience and Engineering Ethics
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 16 Dec 2017

Fingerprint

Scientific Misconduct
Research Personnel
Malaysia
Plagiarism
Authorship
Dissent and Disputes
university
cultural factors
compromise
supervision
incident
Teaching
university teacher
Interviews
Students
monitoring
Pressure

Keywords

  • Research ethics
  • Research integrity
  • Research misconduct
  • Responsible research conduct

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Health Policy
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

Cite this

@article{08ad2806f16d4cf38050b2ebb3094910,
title = "In Their Own Words: Research Misconduct from the Perspective of Researchers in Malaysian Universities",
abstract = "Published data and studies on research misconduct, which focuses on researchers in Malaysia, is still lacking, therefore, we decided that this was an area for investigation. This study provides qualitative results for the examined issues through series of in-depth interviews with 21 researchers and lecturers in various universities in Malaysia. The aims of this study were to investigate the researchers’ opinions and perceptions regarding what they considered to be research misconduct, their experience with such misconduct, and the factors that contribute to research misconduct. Our findings suggest that the most common research misconducts that are currently being witnessed in Malaysian universities are plagiarism and authorship disputes, however, researchers seldom report incidents of research misconduct because it takes too much time, effort and work to report them, and some are just afraid of repercussions when they do report it. This suggests possible loopholes in the monitoring system, which may allow some researchers to bypass it and engage in misconduct. This study also highlights the structural and individual factors as the most influential factors when it comes to research misconduct besides organizational, situational and cultural factors. Finally, this study highlights the concerns of all participants regarding the ‘publish or perish’ pressure that they believe would lead to a hostile working environment, thus enhancing research misconduct, as researchers tend to think about their own performance rather than that of whole team or faculty. Consequently this weakens the interpersonal relationships among researchers, which may compromise the teaching and supervision of junior researchers and research students.",
keywords = "Research ethics, Research integrity, Research misconduct, Responsible research conduct",
author = "Olesen, {Angelina P.} and Latifah Amin and Zurina Mahadi",
year = "2017",
month = "12",
day = "16",
doi = "10.1007/s11948-017-9997-9",
language = "English",
pages = "1--22",
journal = "Science and Engineering Ethics",
issn = "1353-3452",
publisher = "Springer Netherlands",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - In Their Own Words

T2 - Research Misconduct from the Perspective of Researchers in Malaysian Universities

AU - Olesen, Angelina P.

AU - Amin, Latifah

AU - Mahadi, Zurina

PY - 2017/12/16

Y1 - 2017/12/16

N2 - Published data and studies on research misconduct, which focuses on researchers in Malaysia, is still lacking, therefore, we decided that this was an area for investigation. This study provides qualitative results for the examined issues through series of in-depth interviews with 21 researchers and lecturers in various universities in Malaysia. The aims of this study were to investigate the researchers’ opinions and perceptions regarding what they considered to be research misconduct, their experience with such misconduct, and the factors that contribute to research misconduct. Our findings suggest that the most common research misconducts that are currently being witnessed in Malaysian universities are plagiarism and authorship disputes, however, researchers seldom report incidents of research misconduct because it takes too much time, effort and work to report them, and some are just afraid of repercussions when they do report it. This suggests possible loopholes in the monitoring system, which may allow some researchers to bypass it and engage in misconduct. This study also highlights the structural and individual factors as the most influential factors when it comes to research misconduct besides organizational, situational and cultural factors. Finally, this study highlights the concerns of all participants regarding the ‘publish or perish’ pressure that they believe would lead to a hostile working environment, thus enhancing research misconduct, as researchers tend to think about their own performance rather than that of whole team or faculty. Consequently this weakens the interpersonal relationships among researchers, which may compromise the teaching and supervision of junior researchers and research students.

AB - Published data and studies on research misconduct, which focuses on researchers in Malaysia, is still lacking, therefore, we decided that this was an area for investigation. This study provides qualitative results for the examined issues through series of in-depth interviews with 21 researchers and lecturers in various universities in Malaysia. The aims of this study were to investigate the researchers’ opinions and perceptions regarding what they considered to be research misconduct, their experience with such misconduct, and the factors that contribute to research misconduct. Our findings suggest that the most common research misconducts that are currently being witnessed in Malaysian universities are plagiarism and authorship disputes, however, researchers seldom report incidents of research misconduct because it takes too much time, effort and work to report them, and some are just afraid of repercussions when they do report it. This suggests possible loopholes in the monitoring system, which may allow some researchers to bypass it and engage in misconduct. This study also highlights the structural and individual factors as the most influential factors when it comes to research misconduct besides organizational, situational and cultural factors. Finally, this study highlights the concerns of all participants regarding the ‘publish or perish’ pressure that they believe would lead to a hostile working environment, thus enhancing research misconduct, as researchers tend to think about their own performance rather than that of whole team or faculty. Consequently this weakens the interpersonal relationships among researchers, which may compromise the teaching and supervision of junior researchers and research students.

KW - Research ethics

KW - Research integrity

KW - Research misconduct

KW - Responsible research conduct

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85038128874&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85038128874&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/s11948-017-9997-9

DO - 10.1007/s11948-017-9997-9

M3 - Article

C2 - 29249021

AN - SCOPUS:85038128874

SP - 1

EP - 22

JO - Science and Engineering Ethics

JF - Science and Engineering Ethics

SN - 1353-3452

ER -