Combatting Predatory Academic Practices in Nigeria: A Policy Roundtable

The Nigerian Academy of Science (NAS), in collaboration with the Nigerian Young Academy (NYA), convened a policy roundtable discussion focused on combatting predatory academic practices (including predatory journals and conferences) in Nigeria. This was held onn the 29th of March 2022 at the Reiz Continental Hotel in Abuja, and was supported by the Inter-Academy Partnership (IAP).

The roundtable raised awareness among relevant policymakers of predatory academic practices, and their impact on Nigeria’s scientific advancement; identified policies and activities that may be implemented by higher education institutions (HEIs), and other stakeholders to curtail predatory academic practices in Nigeria; as well as foster collaboration in efforts towards addressing predatory practices.

The opening keynote address was by the Director, Cochrane Nigeria, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Professor Martin Meremikwu. He spoke on the topic, “Predatory Academic Practices: Overview and Implications for Nigeria’s Scientific Advancement”.

Professors Olanike Adeyemo FAS, Adesola Ogunniyi FAS and Mr. Billiamin Popoola were speakers in the first session titled ‘Drivers of Predatory Academic Practices in the Nigerian Context’, chaired by Professor Salihu Mustafa FAS. The second session had panel discussions titled ‘The Problem of Predatory Academic Practices in Nigeria: Stakeholders Roles and Perspectives’. Chaired by Professor John Idoko FAS, panelists included Dr. Stephen Adefegha (Federal University of Technology, Akure), Professor Abiodun Adebayo (Vice Chancellor, Covenant University), Professor Gabriel Moti (Dean, School of Postgraduate Studies, University of Abuja), Professor Chinwe Anunobi (National Librarian, National Library of Nigeria), and Professor Micah Osilike FAS (President, Nigeria Mathematical Society/Former Editor, Journal of the Nigerian Mathematical Society). The President of NYA, Dr. Mohammed Ibrahim chaired the last session which was a general discussion titled ‘Combatting Predatory Academic Practices in Nigeria: The Way Forward’.

Given the urgent need to secure Nigeria’s scientific future by stemming the tide of predatory academic practices, the roundtable recommended that Nigerian universities should establish, disseminate, and enforce institutional policies on research misconduct, including patronage of predatory journals and publishers.

The roundtable was attended by 37 participants who are stakeholders and decision makers including representatives from Nigerian Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), Nigerian scientific publications, academic unions, professional bodies, and early career scientists. he roundtable was sequel to an earlier webinar, on predatory academic practices, hosted by NAS on the 9th of March 2022.

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