A postdoctoral fellow specializing in medieval philosophy has plagiarized the writings of a number of scholars in several of her published works, according to an editorial in Vivarium, an academic journal of medieval and early-modern philosophy.
The philosopher, Magali Roques, is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Le Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), and has had fellowships over the past several years at the University of Hamburg and the University of Helsinki. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Tours.
Vivarium has retracted three works of hers they published:
(The last of these was co-authored; the journal explicitly notes that the contribution of the co-author has not been called into question.)
The instances of plagiarism were first brought to the attention of the journal this past summer by Pernille Harsting, who previously played a role in uncovering the massive plagiarism of Martin W.F. Stone (who also worked in medieval philosophy) over a decade ago. During the journal’s investigation, Roques came forward and admitted to plagiarizing.
In their article about the retractions, the editors write about the negative effects of plagiarism and the reasons for publicizing it:
We do not enjoy performing our duty. For marginal fields such as those served by Vivarium, we have seen from experience that the damage wreaked by plagiarism extends to institutions, bringing vulnerable positions, departments, and institutes to the attention of administrators eager to let the rationale of collective punishment direct the evisceration of budgets in Social Sciences and the Humanities. Our colleagues in adjacent fields will seize upon public cases of misconduct as an opportunity to reallocate scarce resources in their favor, thereby ensuring that those who previously lost out to plagiarists in competition for fellowships and positions lose out once again. Yet we believe that it would be worse for the field were we to ignore the accusations, cast doubt on the charges, and claim that the damage done were minimal…
[T]he practice of academic stealing is constantly evolving alongside the countermeasures deployed to catch it, and making public the methods and techniques used in contemporary cases of unattributed copying should help future editors and scholars identify the cases that we collectively missed.
They then proceed to provide detailed evidence of the plagiarism, providing side-by-side comparisons to Roques’ articles with the works from which she stole material. Here’s one example:
The editors write that Roques’ plagiarism “extends far beyond the pages of Vivarium.” In light of this investigation, other writings by Roques have been called into question. One work, “Ockham on the Parts of the Continuum,” originally accepted for publication in Volume 5 of Oxford Studies in Medieval Philosophy, has been withdrawn, and sources say that other retractions elsewhere will be announced soon.
The authors revealed to have been plagiarized by Roques so far include: Jonathan Barnes (Geneva), E.J. Lowe (deceased), Susan Brower-Toland (Saint Louis), Can Laurens Löwe (Purdue), Cecilia Trifogli (Oxford), Stephen Read (St. Andrews), Norman J. Kretzmann (deceased), Paul Spade (Indiana), Simo Knuuttila (Helsinki) and Anja Inkeri Lehtinen (independent), Paloma Pérez-Ilzarbe (Navarra), Jakob Leth Fink (Gothenburg), Heine Hansen (Copenhagen), and Ana María Mora-Marquez (Gothenburg), Niko Strobach (Münster), Edith Sylla (NC State), Ludger Jansen (Münster, Rostock), Glenn Kessler (Virginia, Maine), and the writers of the Wikipedia entry on “nominalism“.