Check out this gem from the London Times:
Fraud may also be good for science, according to Steve Fuller, Professor of Sociology at the University of Warwick. Since most scientific duplicity involves researchers “idealising” results that they probably would eventually have achieved anyway, such fact-fiddling actually oils the wheels of discovery. He even questions whether it should be labelled fraud at all.
Fuller does draw the line at drug studies, where people could be physically harmed if researchers fudged data. But everything else is fair game. Take the recent discovery of the heaviest element (atomic number 118 for those of you scoring at home), which had been “discovered” seven years earlier. Only the previous discovery was bullshit. A lie. A fraud. But Fuller thinks that’s a-ok because the element
would be was created anyway.
And, in the interest of academic integrity, the connection between Fuller’s thesis and the discovery of element 118 was not made by me. Our graduate program secretary pointed this out to me. It’s good to have the wheels of the local bureaucracy greased by intelligent folks.
Bonus point: Steve Fuller was an expert witness for the defense (the school board) in the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial. Yup. Nothing like a guy who defended creationism arguing that real scientists don’t need real data.