Update on AJPS / Harvard Corruption
Following this article last week, a brave Political Science PhD came forward to submit a complaint to the American Journal of Political Science.
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Here is how AJPS responded:
We have received your message about the 2015 AJPS article by Ryan Enos. While we take seriously the idea that you have concerns about the piece, we can’t take your evaluation of the anonymous memo as a reason to begin an investigation. Let us say several things about this situation.
First, we have dealt with multiple cases of scholars raising concerns about the data or findings of a published AJPS article during our three years as editors. In each of these circumstances, we have received the complaint from a person or people who openly brought their concerns to us. This is key to our process, as we make no assumption that a complainant is right when they approach us. Any complaint has to be verified and working directly with the complainants is the only way to proceed. People raising concerns about an article usually have conducted some analysis themselves or, in some cases, gathered data and we have to subject that analysis and those data to scrutiny. In resolving these cases, we have enlisted third-parties to conduct analyses, evaluate data, and make determinations about the validity of complaints. In one case, we were able to clear up the mistakes and misunderstandings of a complainant rather quickly and easily. But, in all situations, we have had to work with the original complainant and his/her data and analysis at multiple points in the process. Any person bringing a complaint against the Enos article would have to be open to demonstrating the validity of their claims and working with us to verify or refute their position. In all of the past cases, we were able to maintain the confidentiality and the identity of the person/people making the complaints. Given your own experience with publishing, we assume that you can see that this is an important safeguard against frivolous or malicious complaints.
The second thing we would say is that this particular situation is being driven by a person with an agenda of some kind or another. We have been clear with Brunet since the beginning that we would take any complaint leveled against this or any article directly from the person drafting the complaint. We can’t and won’t accept anonymous charges, as it undermines our procedures. Brunet’s nonsensical position that we won’t accept the complaint from him because he is not a political scientist or because he does not have a Ph.D is exactly that – nonsense. We made it clear to him what we need to trigger our process. His response has been to lie about what we have said in several different venues. Most recently this has been discussed at length on the poliscirumors blog, where your name was brought up as someone who could be approached to take up the case.
We are sorry that you have spent time on this and we take seriously your credentials to evaluate the anonymous memo. But unless we have access to the data and analysis in a way that allows us to verify or refute their quality, we aren’t able to take this up. Brunet appears to believe that he can bully us into acquiescing by continuing to spread his accusations around in every fora he can find. But our position is clear.
Finally, please be assured that we take seriously the imperative to make sure that published academic work be accurate and conducted appropriately. But we also believe that it is our responsibility to treat authors and complainants fairly. In all of the cases we have handled, complainants came forward, were protected, were held responsible for the quality of their work in complaining, and authors were given opportunities to correct work or were found to have done things correctly. We won’t adopt a different process here because a person with an agenda wants us to do the bidding of an anonymous person.
Kathy and Jen
Department of Political Science
Co-Editor of American Journal of Political Science
University of Wisconsin Milwaukee
P.O. Box 413
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53201
The AJPS editorial board continues to flaunt any semblance of ethics.
They can’t investigate because “this particular situation is being driven by a person with an agenda of some kind or another.” Never mind that I am right, and they are wrong — "agenda” be damned. The only thing that should matter in this situation is OBJECTIVE TRUTH, but truth and justice are clearly alien concepts to careerist Karens like Kathleen Dolan and Jennifer Lawless. Careerist hacks band together and then create an environment in which cheating is not only "ok" but anyone who doesn't do it is deemed a "threat" and will be eliminated and ignored. It's pretty amazing stuff.
It’s sad, but you simply can’t expect such people to understand or care about honor. Their brains have likely been soaking in white wine, SSRI’s, Xanax and Twitter for several decades. They are barely even human at this point; grotesque caricatures of what serious scholars should be. I know that personal attack on them doesn’t exactly increase my credibility with the academy. But again… am I wrong?
I should add that both Dolan and Lawless are gender scholars. It baffles me that AJPS, one of the top general interest journals in political science profession, has been captured by a duo of overtly partisan gender scholars. What is going in PoliSci? Where are the adults in the room?
Are Dolan and Lawless experts on American politics? Comparative politics? War? International relations? Quantitative methods? No. They are experts in having a vagina. That is their sole qualification and sole academic interest — vaginas. Go check out their CVs: here is Dolan, here is Lawless. The word “women” pops up 182 times in the former, and 272 times in the latter. Truly amazing.
“We can’t and won’t accept anonymous charges, as it undermines our procedures,” they say. Show me the rule that says as much. Show me your policies and procedures that codify that you can’t accept anonymous charges (even though these charges aren’t even anonymous — a reputable PoliSci PhD holder attached their name to it). Such a rule doesn’t exist. They are pulling it out of their ass.
“We are sorry that you have spent time on this and we take seriously your credentials to evaluate the anonymous memo. But unless we have access to the data and analysis in a way that allows us to verify or refute their quality, we aren’t able to take this up. “
They have the code.
They have the analysis.
They have the data.
They can easily verify the fabricated data in 15 minutes by looking at the data tables.
Therefore their excuse about “unless we have access to the data in a way that allows us to verify or refute their quality, we aren’t about to take this up,” is a bold faced lie.
Again — they know that if they investigate Ryan Enos’ data fabrication they will have no choice but to find him guilty and retract the paper — so they are desperately grasping at any fake excuse they can think of to avoid triggering an investigation.
“Brunet appears to believe that he can bully us into acquiescing by continuing to spread his accusations around in every fora he can find. “
Yes. I do believe this. It is righteous and good to bully corrupt gatekeepers. They personify the rot that has pervaded academia. They are killing the academy. Any honest scholar should abhor what they are doing and call for their removal from the AJPS editorial board. They have proven themselves to be beyond a shadow of a doubt corrupt.
Refusal To Investigate Research Misconduct Is Itself Research Misconduct
I demand a trial by combat.
Okay… not really. I wish.
I do however have a plan.
I will simply bypass Dolan and Lawless and go over their head. I would love to see their respective home institutions endorse their refusal to investigate this clear-cut case of research misconduct / data fabrication. They have crossed the line from simply obfuscating to being complicit in the research misconduct. I will now be submitting complaints to their respective schools. I invite you to join me.
Submit a formal ethics complaint to UW Milwaukee re: Kathleen Dolan
Vice Provost for Research: email@example.com
Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor: firstname.lastname@example.org
Compliance and ethics officer: email@example.com
Department Chair: firstname.lastname@example.org
Submit a formal ethics complaint to the University of Virginia re: Jen Lawless
Executive Vice President and Provost: email@example.com
Vice Provost for Academic Affairs: firstname.lastname@example.org
Vice Provost for Administration: email@example.com
Associate Vice President and Chief of Staff firstname.lastname@example.org
"Yes. I do believe this. It is righteous and good to bully corrupt gatekeepers. They personify the rot that has pervaded academia. They are killing the academy. Any honest scholar should abhor what they are doing and call for their removal from the AJPS editorial board. They have proven themselves to be beyond a shadow of a doubt corrupt."
I like this. Say it loud, say it proud.
[Puts Cracker Jacks on her shopping list so as to be ready for the next chapter...]
Flout. But yes, totally agree. What's the point of academic journals anymore?