Detecting Image Manipulation: Routines, Tools & Limitations

About this video

Advancing technology has put the control of scientific images in the hands of researchers and authors. According to most journal guidelines, images submitted with a manuscript for review should be minimally processed. However, with limited knowledge on the subject, it is difficult to assess whether the manipulation of an image is misleading or highlighting one's findings. Add to that the pressure of publishing, it is tempting for researchers to tweak an image to go along with findings that, perhaps, aren’t completely valid. In this case, there is a lot more than reputation at stake in the scientific world, especially if the manipulation goes unnoticed.

In collaboration with HEADT Centre at Humboldt University, this Researcher Academy module is dedicated to the challenge of detecting image manipulations in scientific papers. Experts Thorsten Beck and Michael Seadle will provide resources for participants to understand image manipulation more deeply and become aware of aspects they were missing. Moreover, in this module, participants have the chance to exchange experiences and to present and share insights from their own work .

After watching this module, you will come away with a better awareness of what image manipulation is and how to avoid errors when preparing your images for publication. 

About the presenters

Michael Seadle

Humboldt University of Berlin & Humboldt-Elsevier Advanced Data and Text Centre

Prof. Dr. Michael Seadle has written on a wide range of subjects including long term digital archiving, research methodology, copyright, digitization, computing management, and German history. He has been principal investigator on grants from the German Research Foundation (DFG), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS). His current research areas are research integrity and long term digital archiving.

He currently serves as Director of the Berlin School for Library and Information Science (Institut für Bibliothek- und Informationswissenschaft) at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, as well as Associate Dean of the Faculty of Arts I, and chair of the Commission on Research Ethics (Wissenschaftliches Fehlverhalten) and chair of the University Council. He is the editor of two academic journals. He is a founding co-director of the HEADT Centre (Humboldt Elsevier Advanced Data and Text Centre) and head of its research integrity unit.

Thorsten Beck

Humboldt University of Berlin & Humboldt-Elsevier Advanced Data and Text Centre

Thorsten Beck is Postdoc at the HEADT Centre, is a former member of the Interdisciplinary Laboratory Image Knowledge Gestaltung at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Thorsten has profound experience as a museum curator and worked several years as a project manager for the Jewish Museum Berlin and for the agency BERGZWO communication + concepts. Since 2012 he has carried out research at the Cluster of Excellence Image Knowledge Gestaltung where he wrote his doctoral dissertation on the topic of scholarly image manipulations.

IJsbrand Jan Aalbersberg

Senior Vice President of Research Integrity at Elsevier

IJsbrand Jan Aalbersberg is Senior Vice President of Research Integrity for Elsevier, where he is responsible for new technology initiatives to safeguard the integrity of both content and the content-based products that Elsevier offers to the research community. In this role he is also responsible for the user privacy in these Elsevier research products.

IJsbrand Jan joined Elsevier in 1997. During his tenure, he has held a variety of positions that bridge the gap between publishing and technology. He first started at Elsevier’s Engineering Information division, where he led the transformation of the second-generation Engineering Village platform. IJsbrand Jan’s next assignment placed him as one of the initiators of the abstract and citation database Scopus, where he was responsible for its publishing-to-technology connection. In 2006, IJsbrand Jan became Technology Director of Elsevier’s Corporate Markets business unit. In 2009, he moved into a leadership role where he focused on enriching the scientific article on Elsevier’s full-text platform ScienceDirect, establishing Elsevier’s Article of the Future initiative and then expanding to include the company’s research data initiatives.

IJsbrand Jan was awarded a PhD in Theoretical Computer Science at the University of Leiden, after which he became research scientist at Philips Research in both The Netherlands and the USA. He has published scientific articles and holds patents in the areas of document retrieval, research data linking, and user interfaces.