Global Landscape of the Attack of Predatory Journals in Oncology

Khalid El Bairi, Dario Trapani, Sara Jamil Nidhamalddin, Shah Zeb Khan, Arman Reza Chowdhury, Csongor György Lengyel, Sadaqat Hussain, Baker Shalal Habeeb, Angelica Petrillo, Nabil Elhadi Omar, Sara Altuna, Fahmi Usman Seid, Essam Elfaham, Andreas Seeber, Felipe Roitberg, Alan Burguete-Torres, Safa El Kefi, Nazik Hammad, Miriam Mutebi, Ouissam Al JarroudiNadia El Kadmiri, Giuseppe Curigliano, Said Afqir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


PURPOSE: Open-access publishing expanded opportunities to give visibility to research results but was accompanied by the proliferation of predatory journals (PJos) that offer expedited publishing but potentially compromise the integrity of research and peer review. To our knowledge, to date, there is no comprehensive global study on the impact of PJos in the field of oncology. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A 29 question-based cross-sectional survey was developed to explore knowledge and practices of predatory publishing and analyzed using descriptive statistics and binary logistic regression. RESULTS: Four hundred and twenty-six complete responses to the survey were reported. Almost half of the responders reported feeling pressure to publish from supervisors, institutions, and funding and regulatory agencies. The majority of authors were contacted by PJos through email solicitations (67.8%), with fewer using social networks (31%). In total, 13.4% of the responders confirmed past publications on PJo, convinced by fast editorial decision time, low article-processing charges, limited peer review, and for the promise of academic boost in short time. Over half of the participants were not aware of PJo detection tools. We developed a multivariable model to understand the determinants to publish in PJos, showing a significant correlation of practicing oncology in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) and predatory publishing (odds ratio [OR], 2.02 [95% CI, 1.01 to 4.03]; P = .04). Having previous experience in academic publishing was not protective (OR, 3.81 [95% CI, 1.06 to 13.62]; P = .03). Suggestions for interventions included educational workshops, increasing awareness through social networks, enhanced research funding in LMICs, surveillance by supervisors, and implementation of institutional actions against responsible parties. CONCLUSION: The prevalence of predatory publishing poses an alarming problem in the field of oncology, globally. Our survey identified actionable risk factors that may contribute to vulnerability to PJos and inform guidance to enhance research capacity broadly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e2300287
JournalJCO Global Oncology
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2024


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