Comments in English, Please

A hypothetical situation (really):

A researcher whose native language is not English devises a theory, tests and confirms it, writes it all up in English, sends it to the world's most renowned journal in the field (naturally in English) and has his paper accepted.

After the paper is published, he tests the theory once more, with more disappointing results, writes the results up in his native language and sends it to a journal published in his native language, which most people in his field can't read. (Let's assume for the sake of the argument that the journal does not publish English abstracts either.) He makes no particular efforts to make the disappointing results known to people who don't speak his native language, but never actively lies about them.


(This is the last post before the weekend.)


Ross said...

Disappointing*, certainly. The academic would have created an expectation of this work being pursued in English, and would be breaking that expectation, thus the trust of those in his field.

*I'd say unethical if I believed ethics were any more than sanctified preferences.

pj said...

Unethical but I wouldn't say the language specific aspects of it make it any worse than the myriad of similar activities that take place every day in academia.

What is really surprising is that our hypothetical researcher wrote the study up at all.