Volume 15, Issue 4
  • ISSN 1878-9714
  • E-ISSN: 1878-9722
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The retraction of a previously published research article, often due to the discovery of fraud or scientific error, can pose considerable threat to an author’s career and reputation. This paper examines legitimation strategies in the retraction notice (RN), a document in which authors formally announce their decision to retract an article. By analyzing 300 RNs published between 2010–2021 in Q1 biomedical journals, this study finds that 76% RNs contain at least one legitimation strategy, with Mortification, Full/Partial Denial, and Corrective Action being the most frequently used. Moreover, a comparison of RNs that report fraud, misconduct, error, unreliable data/results, and other similar matters shows that fraud-related RNs have the highest incidence of legitimation strategies. Authors committing fraud often employ Mortification, Disclaimer, and Reassurance, while authors reporting scientific errors put more emphasis on Good Intention and Perseverance. This study contributes to the understanding of legitimation and image repair in scientific discourse.


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