Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Research Center Borstel

The German research financing foundation DFG has also published the press release about the sanctions for two researchers from the Research Center in Borstel in English.

  1. Sylvia Bulfone-Paus
    "The DFG Committee concluded that Bulfone-Paus had committed 'gross negligence of her supervisory duty' in her function as the leader of the working group and was therefore guilty of scientific misconduct as stipulated in the DFG procedures."
    Retractionwatch notes that Bulfone-Paus has had to retract 13 papers. However, since only 4 of these were DFG funded, the punishment has turned out to be quite light. She is barred from applying for funding for 3 years, and the time that she voluntarily refrained from using DFG money is applied to this time period. The University of Lübeck seems to be continuing its investigations. (There is also a Spiegel report on the case).
  2. Elena BulanovaBulanova was a researcher with Bulfone-Paus and co-author on a number of the retracted papers. She has been identified as being the person primarily responsible for the data manipulation and is barred from applying for funding for 5 years.
The comments at Retractionwatch show the shock elsewhere in the world that Germany has only applied such mild sanctions. It is beginning to look like one just gets slapped on the wrist for scientific misconduct in Germany. 

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