Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) – TENK guidelines

In the previous recent posts, I introduced TENK, the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity (post 1), overviewed their resolutions for alleged misconducts in past three annual reports (post 2post 3post 4), introduced the Retraction Watch (post 5), and, most recently, and blogged about plagiarism: “‘hands up for mistake, we were idiots’ – some words on plagiarism” (post 6). This post re-shares TENK’s numbered list of guidelines of how to conduct research responsibly. The list is directly copied from the TENK document that binds us making academic research in Finland, Each doctoral student, for example, should be aware of these – and, of course, academic personnel, too.

(From the TENK document, HTK-ohje 2012🙂 From the point of view of research integrity, the premises for the responsible conduct of research are the following:

1. The research follows the principles that are endorsed by the research community, that is, integrity, meticulousness, and accuracy in conducting research, and in recording, presenting, and evaluating the research results.

2. The methods applied for data acquisition as well as for research and evaluation, conform to scientific criteria and are ethically sustainable. When publishing the research results, the results are communicated in an open and responsible fashion that is intrinsic to the dissemination of scientific knowledge.

3. The researcher takes due account of the work and achievements of other researchers by respecting their work, citing their publications appropriately, and by giving their achievements the credit and weight they deserve in carrying out the researcher’s own research and publishing its results.

4. The researcher complies with the standards set for scientific knowledge in planning and conducting the research, in reporting the research results and in recording the data obtained during the research.

5. The necessary research permits have been acquired and the preliminary ethical review that is required for certain fields of research has been conducted.

6. Before beginning the research or recruiting the researchers, all parties within the research project or team (the employer, the principal investigator, and the team members) agree on the researchers’ rights, responsibilities, and obligations, principles concerning authorship, and questions concerning archiving and accessing the data. These agreements may be further specified during the course of the research.

7. Sources of financing, conflicts of interest or other commitments relevant to the conduct of research are announced to all members of the research project and reported when publishing the research results.

8. Researchers refrain from all research-related evaluation and decision-making situations, when there is reason to suspect a conflict of interest.

9. The research organisation adheres to good personnel and financial administration practices and takes into account the data protection legislation.

Posted by Riikka Puurunen

About Riikka Puurunen

Associate professor, Catalysis Science and Technology, at Aalto since February 2017
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