Publication and Data Ownership

Description of the Problem

A graduate student became impatient with the care his advisor was taking in making certain of the correctness of their joint experimental work. He decided that he could wait no longer to publish a paper. On his own, and unbeknownst to his advisor, he wrote up a manuscript and submitted it to Physical Review Letters with his advisor and some other students as co-authors.

The editor at the time became suspicious of the manuscript, because of the writing style, and the fact that the advisor, as senior author, did not submit it. He phoned the advisor and asked him if he had been a party to the submission. It turned out that the advisor did not know about it at all.


What should the advisor do about the manuscript and about the student’s ethical lapse?

Gray arrow Publication and Data Ownership Discussion