Construction and management of retraction stigma in retraction notices: an authorship-based investigation

Shaoxiong (Brian) Xu, Guangwei Hu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Although retraction is widely perceived as stigmatic in the scientific community, little is known about how retraction stigma is communicated via retraction notices. Drawing on a dataset of 1,000 retraction notices, this study investigated what communication strategies were employed in retraction notices to construct and manage retraction stigma and whether retraction notices penned by journal authorities and authors of retracted publications differed in the use of those strategies. A content analysis of the retraction notices identified three types of retraction stigma construction strategy (i.e., creating marks, assigning responsibility, and exposing perils) and four types of retraction stigma management strategy (i.e., concealing stigma visibility, refraining from labelling, manipulating responsibility assignment, and offering correction and remediation). Authorship-based differences were found in the deployment of all seven types of stigma construction and management strategy and 17 individual strategies. The use of two types of construction strategy were significantly associated with the use of three types of management strategy. These findings revealed retraction notices as capable of both stigmatizing and destigmatizing. Thus, retraction notices constitute a discourse genre that is imbued with communicative tensions rooted in the diverse functions that they can serve.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCurrent Psychology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023


  • Research and publication ethics
  • Retraction notice
  • Retraction notice authorship
  • Retraction stigma
  • Stigma construction strategy
  • Stigma management strategy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Construction and management of retraction stigma in retraction notices: an authorship-based investigation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this