Presented at in the Symposium on Scientific Publishing, acs national Meeting, Atlanta, ga march 2006



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  • Leonard V. Interrante
  • Editor-in-chief, Chemistry of Materials
  • Some Slides are Adopted from the talk of
  • Issues related to Scientific Publication
  • – Presentation, Ethics and Impact
  • Prashant V. Kamat
  • The object of research is to extend human knowledge beyond what is already known.
  • But an individual’s knowledge enters the domain of science only after it is presented to others in such a fashion that they can independently judge its validity
  • (NAP, “On Being a Scientist” 1995)
  • Scientific Knowledge
  • Science is a shared knowledge based on a common understanding of some aspect of the physical or social world
  • Presentations
  • - Social conventions play an important role in establishing the reliability of scientific knowledge
  • Publications in peer reviewed journals
  • - Research results are privileged until they are published
  • Thesis
  • (NAP, “On Being a Scientist” 1995)
  • Sharing Scientific Knowledge

Why Publish?

  • A paper is an organized description of hypotheses, data and conclusions, intended to instruct the reader. If your research does not generate papers, it might just as well not have been done” (G. Whitesides, Adv. Mater., 2004, 16, 1375)
  • “if it wasn’t published, it wasn’t done” - in E.H. Miller 1993
  • Journal
  • Authors
  • Reviewer
  • Scientific Publication is a Team Effort
  • ACS Journals:http://pubs.acs.org/about.html

Author Responsibilities – Preparation and Submission of Manuscripts:

  • Follow General Rules:
    • Ensure work is new and original research
    • All Authors listed on ms are aware of submission and agree with content and support submission
    • Agree that the manuscript can be examined by anonymous reviewers.
    • Provide copies of related work submitted or published elsewhere
    • Obtain copyright permission if figures/tables need to be reproduced
    • Include proper affiliation

What is publishable….

  • Journals like to publish papers that are going to be widely read and useful to the readers
  • Papers that report “original and significant” findings that are likely to be of interest to a broad spectrum of its readers
  • Papers that are well organized and well written, with clear statements regarding how the findings relate to and advance the understanding/development of the subject
  • Papers that are concise and yet complete in their presentation of the findings

What is not acceptable…

  • Papers that are routine extensions of previous reports and that do not appreciably advance fundamental understanding or knowledge in the area
  • Incremental / fragmentary reports of research results
  • Verbose, poorly organized, papers cluttered with unnecessary or poor quality illustrations
  • Violations of ethical guidelines, including plagiarism of any type or degree (of others or of oneself)

Useful Definitions: Scientific Misconduct

  • “Scientific misconduct means fabrication, falsification, plagiarism, or other practices that seriously deviate from those that are commonly accepted within the scientific community for proposing, conducting or reporting research”
  • Managing Allegations of Scientific Misconduct: A Guidance Document for Editors, January 2000, Office of Research Integrity, Office of Public Health and Science, U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services http://ori.dhhs.gov

Useful Definitions: Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism

  • Plagiarism: using the ideas or words of another person without giving appropriate credit (Nat. Acad. Press document)
  • Self-Plagiarism: The verbatim copying or reuse of one’s own research (IEEE Policy statement)
  • Both types of plagiarism are considered to be unacceptable practice by most scientific publications

Other Types of Ethical Violations

  • Duplicate publication/submission of research findings; failure to inform the editor of related papers that the author has under consideration or “in press”
  • Unrevealed conflicts of interest that could affect the interpretation of the findings
  • Misrepresentation of research findings - use of selective or fraudulent data to support a hypothesis or claim
  • Some recent examples
  • Sooner or later
  • ……. ethical violations get exposed
  • 24 MAY 2002 VOL 296 SCIENCE, p 1376
  • 24 MAY 2002 VOL 296 SCIENCE, p 1376
  • Ethical Responsibilities for Authors in
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • I recently took the step of retracting from the scientific record a letter published in The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, as it is emblematic of a type of author misconduct that we as research professionals must seek to avoid if we are to uphold the integrity of the scientific literature.
  • The letter in question was a publication by Fang et al., J. Phys. Chem. C 2007, 111, 1065-1070. After publication of the letter, it was brought to our attention that the paper by Fang et al., as submitted and subsequently published by the journal after peer review, included a number of figures that duplicated those contained within previously published papers by other authors ……... I judged such misconduct by the authors to constitute a serious instance of plagiarism.
  • George Schatz
  • Editor in Chief
  • J. Phys. Chem. A/B/C
  • A recent retraction …..
  • Original Paper
  • Oriented Assembly of Fe3O4 Nanoparticles into Monodisperse Hollow Single-Crystal Microspheres Yu et al, J. Phys. Chem. B 2006, 110, 21667-21671 (Figure 3)
  • Plagiarized paper:
  • Fabrication of Monodisperse Magnetic Fe3O4-SiO2 Nanocomposites with Core-Shell Structures Hua Fang,* Chun-yang Ma, Tai-li Wan, Mei Zhang, and Wei-hai Shi J. Phys. Chem C 2007, 111, 1065-1070
  • Original paper:
  • Ultra-large-scale syntheses of monodisperse nanocrystals, Park et al. Nature Materials, 2004, 3, 891 (Figure 3C)
  • NATURE|VOL 420 | 12 DECEMBER 20002 p 594
  • Citations
  • Read the work before you cite
  • Important to cite the work correctly and completely
  • The Plagiarism Hunter
  • When one graduate student went to the library, he found copycats — lots of them By PAULA WASLEY, Athens, Ohio
  • In Ohio University's Library, Thomas A. Matrka takes just 15 minutes to hit pay dirt. Scattered before him on a table are 16 chemical-engineering master's theses on "multiphase flow.“ Identical diagrams in two theses from 1997 and 1998 strike him as suspicious. Turning a few more pages, he confirms what he suspected………..
  • Most of the plagiarism found at Ohio occurred in introductory chapters describing research methods and reviewing the previous literature in the field, for which there is little expectation of originality. And all but a few cases involved international students who, he says, whether through ignorance, laziness, or cultural misunderstanding, may have either not known correct citation practices or, struggling to write in a foreign language, been tempted to borrow another student's words.
  • The Chronicle of Higher Education, August 11, 2006
  • Also in Wall Street Journal –today’s issue
  • (40% students use materials downloaded from internet!)

How Journals Detect and Handle Problem Papers

  • Information received from reviewers or other editors
  • Literature search for related papers by the author
  • Withdrawal of a paper from publication
  • Banning authors from publication in the journal for 3-5 years and informing the co-authors and editors of related journals of our action
  • For less serious cases, placing the author on a “watch list” for careful examination of their submissions prior to requesting reviews
  • RETRACTED: Fluorescence lifetime increase by introduction of F− ions in ytterbium-doped TeO2-based glasses  Journal of Alloys and Compounds, Volume 393, Issues 1-2, 3 May 2005, Pages 279-282 Guonian Wang, Shixun Dai, Junjie Zhang, Shiqing Xu and Zhonghong Jiang
  • RETRACTED: Effect of F− ions on spectroscopic properties of Yb3+-doped zinc–tellurite glasses  • Journal of Physics and Chemistry of Solids, Volume 66, Issue 6, June 2005, Pages 1107-1111 Guonian Wang, Junjie Zhang, Shixun Dai, Jianhu Yang and Zhonghong Jiang
  • RETRACTED
  • From Science@Direct (Elsevier)

A Call for Cooperation

  • “We would like to encourage the leaders of academic research groups to inform their students and research associates about the ethical responsibilities of authors of scientific publications and to insure that, when they are given the responsibility for submitting a paper, they are fully aware of the potential consequences, to themselves and to their co-authors, of violations in these ethical guidelines.”
  • Interrante & Reichmanis,C&EN, Vol 83(6), p. 4 (2005)
  • Scientific Ethics is an integral part of graduate research.
  • STATEMENTS, FIGURES AND TABLES
  • Reproduced in a Report, Presentation and/or Paper require proper citation.
  • Published work is protected by Copyright Law
  • Copyright permission is necessary if you are reproducing your work in another publication
  • (This applies even if it is your own work)
  • Summary

Guidelines For Authors and Scientists

    • Ethical Guidelines to Publication of Chemical Research (ACS Pubs. Div.) - available via Paragon or ACS Journals web site
    • “On Being a Scientist: Responsible Conduct in Research”; National Academy Press, Wash. D.C, 1995 (http://www.nap.edu/readingroom/books/obas/)
    • IEEE Policy Statement on Self-Plagiarism (http://www.comsoc.org/pubs/jrnal/transcom/Self_Plagiarism.pdf)
    • Managing Allegations of Scientific Misconduct: A Guidance Document for Editors, January 2000, Office of Research Integrity, Office of Public Health and Science, U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services http://ori.dhhs.gov
  • 1896-1996
  • 2007-
  • B
  • by
  • Prashant Kamat
  • Senior Editor
  • Univ. of Notre Dame
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • 1997-2006
  • Bridgette Barry Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Michael A. Duncan University of Georgia
  • Peter M. Felker University of California, Los Angeles
  • John T. Fourkas University of Maryland
  • Sharon Hammes-Schiffer The Pennsylvania State University
  • Kenneth D. Jordan University of Pittsburgh
  • Prashant V. Kamat University of Notre Dame
  • James M. Lisy University of Illinois/Urbana-Champaign
  • Gang-yu Liu University of California at Davis
  • Anne B. McCoy The Ohio State University
  • Timothy Minton Montana State University
  • Catherine J. Murphy University of South Carolina
  • Benjamin J. Schwartz University of California, Los Angeles
  • Sarah H. Tolbert University of California, Los Angeles
  • Paul H. Wine Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Jin Z. Zhang University of California; Santa Cruz
  • Josef W. Zwanziger Dalhousie University, Canada
  • Timothy S. Zwier Purdue University
  • EDITOR
  • George C. Schatz, Editor in Chief SENIOR EDITORS
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Scope
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry is devoted to reporting new and original experimental and theoretical basic research of interest to physical chemists, biophysical chemists, and chemical physicists.
  • Papers submitted to J. Phys. Chem. should provide an in depth study and present important new scientific advances. It should also carry a strong scientific discussion.
  • An important criterion for acceptance is that the paper provides new physical chemistry insights derived from the results.
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Letters are short articles that report results whose immediate availability to the scientific community is deemed important. Letters may occasionally have a follow-up publication when the research is continued and a more complete account of the work is deemed necessary.
  • Articles should report original research that is expected to have a definable impact on the advancement of science and technology. Manuscripts should cover their subjects with thoroughness and clarity but should be as concise as possible.
  • Feature Articles/Review Articles are usually published by invitation; however, Authors in important active research fields of interest to physical chemists are encouraged to propose such articles. Two page proposals should be sent to the Editor-in-Chief for consideration.
  • Types of Contributions
  • NOTE: It is important to make a proper selection of the Letter or Article category during MS submission
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Editorial Office
  • Author
  • Reviewer
  • Submission, Editorial Screening, Reviewing and Editorial Decision Processes are similar to those presented in previous talks
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Scientific Publication is a Team Effort
  • Title, Abstract and Figures
  • -Title should represent the content of the paper (avoid study, investigation, novel, facile, simple …etc in the title)
  • -Abstract should be concise.
    • Briefly indicate the problem, methods, results, and conclusions in a simple text that general audience can understand and appreciate your work.
  • -Figures should be checked carefully before submission.
  • Check font size, axis label and identification of individual traces
  • Avoid meaningless numbers
  • Clarity
  • Move additional/ repetitive figures to supporting information
  • Revision Request
  • Read the Reviewers comments carefully.
  • The Reviewers and Editors spend a lot of time to make suggestions and improve the scientific quality of the paper. The authors should make every effort to address their concerns.
  • Revision is an opportunity to improve the scientific quality of the paper. If these issues are not addressed properly, the paper gets rejected.
  • Often misuse of scientific context or bad presentation leads to misunderstanding of the statement made in the text.
  • Use supporting information to include figures, tables, derivations, movies, photographs, methods & techniques etc.
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Request for Revision is not a guarantee that the paper will be accepted
  • What to do when a paper gets rejected……
  • Do not get discouraged. Read editorial comments and discuss with advisor/students/collaborators. Find out how you can make this study stronger and acceptable for publication.
  • Do not just turn around and submit the paper to another journal.
  • Read carefully the comments and find ways to improve the scientific quality of the papers
  • Carry out additional experiments and improve the quality of scientific discussions. (JPC often looks for papers with quantitative and mechanistic information that represent new physical insights )
  • Rejected papers can be resubmitted if and only the concerns of the reviewers are adequately addressed and new results are included.
  • If you have questions, please feel free to contact the editorial office.
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Data without scientific discussion, applications of data, or reviews of the literature are not sufficient.
  • Routine synthesis and characterization of nanomaterials or studies that report incremental advance are not considered suitable for publication.
  • Use of the phrase “Novel” or “First-time” in the title or abstract. Such descriptions do not impress the reader or the reviewer.
  • (Another over used phrase “One-pot synthesis” )
  • Names of flowers, fruits and vegetables to describe the nanoparticle/nanostructure shapes/morphology
  • What to Avoid?
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • The authors should make every effort to make a good presentation with proper usage of English grammar.
  • “English is not my Native Language” is not a valid justification for reviewer who cannot comprehend.
  • Reviewers do not wish to review papers that are not readable. Badly written papers are often recommended as “REJECT” by the Reviewers
  • ACS Publication office helps to edit the language for accepted manuscripts, but this only happens if the English was good enough to be reviewed.
  • To do even better ….
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Ten characteristics of an incredibly dull paper
  • Sand-Jenson in Oikos 2007, 116 723 (C&E News Sept 10, 2007)
  • Avoid Focus
  • Avoid originality and personality
  • Make the article really really long
  • Do not indicate any potential implications
  • Leave out illustrations (…too much effort to draw a sensible drawing)
  • Omit necessary steps of reasoning
  • Use abbreviations and technical terms that only specialists in the field can understand
  • Make it sound too serious with no significant discussion
  • Focus only on statistics
  • Support every statement with a reference
  • We need your Feedback
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry
  • Suggestions for maintaining high scientific quality of papers
    • - Point out duplicate/simultaneous submissions during peer review process
    • - Need to know submission by students without the consent of other authors
    • Information on the authentication of a submitted paper
  • Editorial Assistance
    • Need competitive reviewer names
    • Need suggestions for feature articles
    • Advisory board member suggestions (invited by the Editor in Chief to serve on the board)
    • Any constructive suggestions
  • jpc@nd.edu or jphyschm@chem.northwestern.edu
  • Contributions from India 1997-2007
  • 10 Most Cited Papers since 1997
  • 1. Maiti, N.C.; Mazumdar, S.; Periasamy, N., J- and H-aggregates of porphyrin-surfactant complexes: Time-resolved fluorescence and other spectroscopic studies. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 1998. 102, 1528-1538. (Times Cited 191)
  • 2. Sarathy, K.V.; Raina, G.; Yadav, R.T.; Kulkarni, G.U.; Rao, C.N.R., Thiol-derivatized nanocrystalline arrays of Au, Ag, and Pt. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 1997. 101, 9876-9880. (Times Cited 152)
  • 3. Nandi, N.; Bagchi, B., Dielectric relaxation of biological water. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 1997. 101, 10954-10961. (Times Cited 147)
  • 4. Pal, S.K.; Peon, J.; Bagchi, B.; Zewail, A.H., Biological water: Femtosecond dynamics of macromolecular hydration. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 2002. 106, 12376-12395. (Times Cited 124)
  • 5. Maiti, N.C.; Krishna, M.M.G.; Britto, P.J.; Periasamy, N., Fluorescence dynamics of dye probes in micelles. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 1997. 101, 11051-11060. (Times Cited 99)
  • 6. Murase, N.; Jagannathan, R.; Kanematsu, Y.; Watanabe, M.; Kurita, A.; Hirata, K.; Yazawa, T.; Kushida, T., Fluorescence and EPR characteristics of Mn2+-doped ZnS nanocrystals prepared by aqueous colloidal method. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 1999. 103, 754-760. (Times Cited 93)
  • 7. Datta, A.; Mandal, D.; Pal, S.K.; Bhattacharyya, K., Intramolecular charge transfer processes in confined systems.. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 1997. 101, 10221-10225. (Times Cited 89)
  • 8. Sastry, M.; Mayya, K.S.; Patil, V.; Paranjape, D.V.; Hegde, S.G., Langmuir-Blodgett films of carboxylic acid derivatized silver colloidal particles: Role of subphase pH on degree of cluster incorporation. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 1997. 101, 4954-4958. (Times Cited 74)
  • 9. Thomas, K.G.; Barazzouk, S.; Ipe, B.I.; Joseph, S.T.S.; Kamat, P.V., Uniaxial plasmon coupling through longitudinal self-assembly of gold nanorods. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 2004. 108, 13066-13068. (Times Cited 69)
  • 10. Dhanaraj, J.; Jagannathan, R.; Kutty, T.R.N.; Lu, C.H., Photoluminescence characteristics of Y2O3: Eu3+ nanophosphors prepared using sol-gel thermolysis. Journal Of Physical Chemistry B, 2001. 105, 11098-11105. (Times Cited 69)
  • Source: ISI Web of Knowledge
  • 1. Bhattacharyya, K.; Bagchi, B., Slow dynamics of constrained water in complex geometries. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 2000. 104, 10603-10613. (Times Cited 176)
  • 2. Karmakar, R.; Samanta, A., Solvation dynamics of coumarin-153 in a room-temperature ionic liquid. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 2002. 106, 4447-4452. (Times Cited 105)
  • 3. Roy, R.K.; Krishnamurti, S.; Geerlings, P.; Pal, S., Local softness and hardness based reactivity descriptors for predicting intra- and intermolecular reactivity sequences: Carbonyl compounds. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 1998. 102, 3746-3755. (Times Cited 96)
  • 4. Das, S.; Datta, A.; Bhattacharyya, K., Deuterium isotope effect on 4-aminophthalimide in neat water and reverse micelles. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 1997. 101, 3299-3304. (Cited 91)
  • 5. Karmakar, R.; Samanta, A., Steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence behavior of C153 and PRODAN in room-temperature ionic liquids. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 2002. 106, 6670-6675. (Times Cited 79)
  • 6. Chattaraj, P.K., Chemical reactivity and selectivity: Local HSAB principle versus frontier orbital theory. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 2001. 105, 511-513. (Times Cited 65)
  • 7. Chattaraj, P.K.; Maiti, B.; Sarkar, U., Philicity: A unified treatment of chemical reactivity and selectivity. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 2003. 107, 4973-4975. (Times Cited 61)
  • 8. Maheshwary, S.; Patel, N.; Sathyamurthy, N.; Kulkarni, A.D.; Gadre, S.R., Structure and stability of water clusters (H2O)(n), n=8-20: An ab initio investigation. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 2001. 105, 10525-10537. (Times Cited 75)
  • 9. Biswas, N.; Umapathy, S., Density functional calculations of structures, vibrational frequencies, and normal modes of trans- and cis-azobenzene. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 1997. 101, 5555-5566. (Times Cited 61)
  • 10. Karmakar, R.; Samanta, A., Dynamics of solvation of the fluorescent state of some electron donor-acceptor molecules in room temperature ionic liquids, [BMIM][(CF3SO2)(2)N] and [EMIM][(CF3SO2)(2)N]. Journal Of Physical Chemistry A, 2003. 107, 7340-7346. (Times Cited 58)
  • The Journal of Physical Chemistry A
  • 10 Most Cited Papers since 1997
  • Source: ISI Web of Knowledge
  • Thank you
  • B


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