Here are two researchers — one from Iran and currently working in Malaysia, and one based at Serbia’s University of Niš — who are either amazingly productive researchers, or some other scenario. Neither researcher appears to be exploiting the easy-acceptance offered by predatory journals. Is the whole scholarly publishing system falling apart?
Dr. Shamshirband is a senior lecturer at the Department of Computer Systems and Technology, Faculty of Computer Science and Information Technology, University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He apparently got his Ph.D. there in 2014. In 2008, he earned a masters degree at Iran’s Islamic Azad University.
His CV shows he has authored or co-authored 212 scholarly articles since 2011. I count 49 articles under his name in 2016, an average of about six each month so far for the year. Stand by for more. Before 2014, he had only four publications, so the bulk of his research (over 200 articles) has been published in the period 2014 to now. He reports his h-index as 14, an amazing value for a researcher who’s been publishing just a few years.
Petković is a member of the mechanical engineering faculty at Serbia’s University of Niš. His scholarly publishing statistics are also questionably high. For example, his Google Scholar profile indicates he has an h-index of 18 and a total of 1364 citations since 2011. His LinkedIn page says he got his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Nis in 2012. I see at least 19 articles he’s published in 2016 so far, over two per month. In the four-year period from August, 2012 to the present, his published journal articles number 105 by my count, or 26 articles per year, one every two weeks.
It appears that these authors work together to produce salami-sliced articles and then simultaneously submit the various versions to several journals. Much of the text matches from article to article, but with simultaneous submission, plagiarism-checking software can’t always catch the duplication. Or are the publishers even checking?
Following are three references, each followed by a screenshot of the first part of the corresponding article’s introduction. Note the recycled text. The remaining text in the articles — as well as some of the figures — matches similarly.
Dalibor Petković, Shahaboddin Shamshirband, Nor Badrul Anuar, Mohd Hairul Nizam Md Nasir, Nenad T. Pavlović & Shatirah Akib. (2014). Adaptive neuro-fuzzy prediction of modulation transfer function of optical lens system. Infrared Physics & Technology 65, p. 54–60. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.infrared.2014.03.011
Dalibor Petković, Shahaboddin Shamshirband, Hadi Saboohi, Tan Fong Ang, Nor Badrul Anuar, Zulkanain Abdul Rahman, Nenad T. Pavlović. (2014). Evaluation of modulation transfer function of optical lens system by support vector regression methodologies: A comparative study. Infrared Physics & Technology 65, p. 94–102. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.infrared.2014.04.005
Dalibor Petković, Shahaboddin Shamshirband, Nenad T. Pavlović, Nor Badrul Anuar, Laiha Mat Kiah. (2014). Modulation transfer function estimation of optical lens system by adaptive neuro-fuzzy methodology. Optics and Spectroscopy 117(1), p. 121-131. http://doi.org/10.1134/S0030400X14070042
It seems these researchers have developed a successful salami slicing system for getting lots of articles published quickly in supposedly good journals. The high number of authors on each paper arouses suspicion also: are these authorship spots being brokered? Is this entire operation part of a sophisticated, international citation cartel?
Universities tend to have a “hands off” policy towards their highly-productive faculty, even when the accelerated production is under a cloud of suspicion. Faculty publications in top-tier journals help lift university and program rankings, and few universities are willing to stop a practice that elevates their rankings.
Scholarly publishing is supposed to work on a “gentleman’s agreement” basis, but the influence of predatory publishers has poisoned much of research communication, and the articles listed here are evidence of that.
I ask that the publishers involved in these cases investigate whether these publications violate ethical standards and policies.
Hat tip: Anonymous
Additional examples of apparent salami slicing:
First set, Articles on wind turbines:
Support vector regression methodology for wind turbine reaction torque prediction with power-split hydrostatic continuous variable transmission Journal Name: Energy, Volume 67, 1 April 2014, Pages 623–630. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0360544214001339
Wind turbine power coefficient estimation by soft computing methodologies: Comparative study, Energy Conversion and Management, Volume 81, May 2014, Pages 520–526. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0196890414001745
Survey of the most influential parameters on the wind farm net present value (NPV) by adaptive neuro-fuzzy approach. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Volume 57, May 2016, Pages 1270–1278. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1364032115015580
Second set, Articles on robotic grippers:
Dalibor Petković, Amir Seyed Danesh, Mehdi Dadkhah, Negin Misaghian, Shahaboddin Shamshirband, Erfan Zalnezhad, Nenad D. Pavlović, Adaptive control algorithm of flexible robotic gripper by extreme learning machine, Robotics and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing 37 (2016) 170–178, Received 14 September 2014 Received in revised form 28 July 2015 Accepted 7 September 2015 Available online 29 September 2015. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.rcim.2015.09.006
Dalibor Petković, Shahaboddin Shamshirband, Almas Abbasi, Kourosh Kiani, Eiman Tamah Al-Shammari, Prediction of contact forces of underactuated finger by adaptive neuro fuzzy approach, Mechanical Systems and Signal Processing 64-65 (2015) 520–527, Article history: Received 25 September 2013 Received in revised form 10 March 2015 Accepted 13 March 2015 Available online 23 April 2015. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ymssp.2015.03.013
Petkovi , D., Shamshirband, S., Anuar, N. B., Sabri, A. Q. M., Rahman, Z. B. A., & , N. D. (2015). Input Displacement Neuro-fuzzy Control and Object Recognition by Compliant Multi-fingered Passively Adaptive Robotic Gripper. Journal of Intelligent & Robotic Systems, 1-11. Received: 4 March 2013 / Accepted: 9 January 2015 / Published online: 29 January 2015. http://doi.org/10.1007/s10846-015-0182-6
Dalibor Petković · Shahaboddin Shamshirband · Hadi Saboohi · Tan Fong Ang · Nor Badrul Anuar · Nenad D. Pavlović, Support vector regression methodology for prediction of input displacement of adaptive compliant robotic gripper, Appl Intell (2014) 41:887–896 DOI 10.1007/s10489-014-0574-5 Published online: 19 August 2014. http://doi.org/10.1007/s10489-014-0574-5
Dalibor Petković, Shahaboddin Shamshirband, Javed Iqbal, Nor Badrul Anuar, Nenad D. Pavlović, Miss Laiha Mat Kiah, Adaptive neuro-fuzzy prediction of grasping object weight for passively compliant gripper, Applied Soft Computing 22 (2014) 424–431, Article history: Received 9 December 2012 Received in revised form 20 February 2014 Accepted 26 April 2014 Available online 5 May 2014. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.asoc.2014.04.037
Dalibor Petković, Javed Iqbal, Shahaboddin Shamshirband, Abdullah Gani, Nenad D. Pavlovit, and Miss Laiha Mat Kiah. Kinetostatic Analysis of Passively Adaptive Robotic Finger with Distributed Compliance, Advances in Mechanical Engineering Received 25 September 2013; Accepted 7 December 2013; Published 2 January 2014. http://doi.org/10.1155/2014/145648
Petković, D; Pavlović, ND ; Shamshirband, S; Anuar, NB, Development of a new type of passively adaptive compliant gripper INDUSTRIAL ROBOT-AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL, Volume: 40 Issue: 6 Pages: 610-623, 2013 http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IR-12-2012-452