Publication pressure and scientific misconduct in medical scientists

Joeri K Tijdink, Reinout Verbeke, Yvo M Smulders

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


There is increasing evidence that scientific misconduct is more common than previously thought. Strong emphasis on scientific productivity may increase the sense of publication pressure. We administered a nationwide survey to Flemish biomedical scientists on whether they had engaged in scientific misconduct and whether they had experienced publication pressure. A total of 315 scientists participated in the survey; 15% of the respondents admitted they had fabricated, falsified, plagiarized, or manipulated data in the past 3 years. Fraud was more common among younger scientists working in a university hospital. Furthermore, 72% rated publication pressure as "too high." Publication pressure was strongly and significantly associated with a composite scientific misconduct severity score.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-71
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014


  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Attitude
  • Belgium
  • Biomedical Research/ethics
  • Ethics, Research
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Publishing/ethics
  • Research Personnel/ethics
  • Scientific Misconduct
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Workload


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