Sunday, 12 May 2013

The Anatomy of a Fraud

[update: 12 May 2013] Robert Trivers added a page to his blog called Fraud at Rutgers and released the investigation report of the Research Advisory Board of Rutgers University. Nature published a news articles about the case. (HT to Jeremy Fox at Dynamic Ecology. See also this post by Jon F Wilkins at Lost in Transcription.)

[date: 5 Feb. 2013] Below is a Nature paper that has never been officially retracted, AFAIK, and is still cited. The re-analysis by Trivers et al. matches Fisher's famous re-analysis of Mendel's data. Trivers was one of the co-authors of the original paper, but he got suspicious, when one of his students could not repeat the results of the study given the data.

Just click through and make up your own mind.

Brown WM, Cronk L, Grochow K, Jacobson A, Liu CK, Popovic Z, Trivers R (2005) Dance reveals symmetry especially in young men. Nature 488: 1148-1150.
→ Cited 121 times according to Google Scholar at 05. Feb. 2013 (and counting).

Trivers R, Pallestis BG, Zaatari D (2009) The anatomy of a fraud. TPZ Publishing, Antioch, CA.

Here's an animation of an asymmetrical male dancer.

 [update: 12 May 2013]  A web page showing how the animations are produced is here.

Some more links for those interested in the other side:

Dr William M. Brown's
university website; tweets @coevolve; blog sociogenomics;