Thursday, 1 June 2017

High Time to Distrust Peer Review: Dog Sits on the Editorial Board of 7 Journals

A dog like this sits on the editorial board of seven medical journals. Image courtesy of Andrejco, public domain.

Joel Kontinen

Dr. Olivia Doll sits on the editorial board of seven medical journals.

Her CV says that she holds a degree from Subiaco College of Veterinary Science, where she currently works as senior lecturer and is an expert in canine massage. It also lists her past work at Shenton Park Institute for Canine Refuge Studies.

Dr. Olivia Doll happens to be a Staffordshire terrier named Ollie. The Shenton Park Institute is a code term for a dog shelter.

The five-year-old terrier is owned by Professor Mike Daube. He invented Dr. Doll’s credentials in an attempt to examine how carefully medical journals vet their reviewers.

Not very carefully, obviously.

None of the journals suspected anything fishy about this reviewer. She was even offered the position of associate editor of the Global Journal of Addiction and Rehabilitation Medicine.

Peer review and proper scientific conduct seem to be in a crisis. Journals have accepted bogus papers, and scientific misconduct thrives in the Darwinian world.


Ghose, Tia. 2017. Dog 'Scientist' Sits on Editorial Board of Medical Journals. Live Science (31 May).