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More on Dmitri Kouznetsov

First read: Didn't a Russian scientist claim extreme heat could effect carbon dating?

In 2007, William Meacham, a Hong Kong-based archeologist, wrote a stinging article in Antiquity, revealing that Dmitri Kouznetsov had managed to have three papers published in peer-reviewed journals with faked data, references to journals that did not exist and the names of fictional institutions. : International Journal of Neuroscience, Journal of Archaeological Science and Studies in Conservation.

The one in the Journal of Archaeological Science pertained to his faked science trying to refute the carbon dating. The last one was, however, the most blatant fabrications. Meacham quotes from a letter from Mary Cahill, Assistant Keeper in the Irish Antiquities Division of the National Museum of Ireland to the International Institute for Conservation. The letter says about all that needs to be said about Kouznetsov:

The burials which [Kouznetsov] describes containing the remains of some named individuals are unknown to Irish archaeology. The institutions and the individuals which he names as having provided the samples do not exist....Excavations at the sites described have not taken place....The author seems to have gone to some trouble to 'identify' sites and names of persons which are clearly Irish in origin but to anyone familiar with the archaeology and history of the country are immediately suspect....Suffice it to say that the information on Ireland given in the article has no basis in truth.

Meacham concluded:

Despicable as these kinds of fraud are, there is a certain 'bottom feeder' function that they provide, calling attention to flaws in the procedures of science publishing. That Kouznetsov could pull off such an amazing con on a prominent peer-reviewed journal clearly illustrates the need for fact-checking and background-checking of potential contributors, even if it adds time to the review process, especially when important claims are made. Failure to do so can obviously result in considerable embarrassment to the editor and publisher.

 

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