SAGE and the Journal Editor issued an expression of concern for Erjavec K and Volčič Z (2010) ‘Target’, ‘cancer’ and ‘warrior’: Exploring painful metaphors of self-presentation used by girls born of war rape. Discourse & Society, Erjavec K and Volčič Z (2007) ‘War on terrorism’ as a discursive battleground: Serbian recontextualization of G.W. Bush’s discourse. Discourse & Society and Erjavec K and Volčič Z (2009) Management through spiritual self-help discourse in post-socialist Slovenia Discourse & Communication.
In June 2019, the Editor and SAGE were alerted to a potential issue regarding the ethical integrity of research undertaken by Karmen Erjavec at the University of Ljubljana. Allegations were also made that articles contained identical statements and data attributed to different sources.
In accordance with the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) guidance, the Editor contacted one of the authors and the University of Ljubljana. In August 2019, the University confirmed that it had already investigated and concluded their investigation.
In October 2015 the University of Ljubljana Ethics Commission received a letter from the Faculty of Social Sciences raising questions about the integrity of the research on which the above articles are based.
Prof. Erjavec denied accusations of dishonesty but acknowledged that at the time of the investigation she had not retained research materials (such as interview protocols and other data obtained in polls she performed) that are necessary for reproducibility, traceability and accountability.
The University Ethics Commission examined all the evidence and submitted its final report to the Senate of the University of Ljubljana. The Senate met in December 2017 and in a unanimous decision condemned the negligent handling of research materials preventing the traceability and verification of the research results as ethically unacceptable, issuing a general condemnation of any research publication which cannot withstand a scientific evaluation of its credibility because the relevant research documentation is inaccessible and untraceable.
The Editor and SAGE strive to uphold the very highest standards of publication ethics and are committed to supporting the high standards of integrity of our journals. Authors, reviewers, editors, and interested readers should consult the ethics section of the SAGE website and the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) website for guidelines on publication ethics.