Nicholas Steneck describes the background to the 1st World Conference on Research Integrity.
default WCRI2007 Nick STENECK Professional Ethics Report Fall 2007 (201 KB)
The globalization of research has been in progress for several decades, aided most recently by new tools for communication and the Internet. Prior conferences and meetings have explored in depth ways to foster and benefit from these developments. None has looked specifically at the issues globalization raises for research integrity.
The World Conference on Research Integrity was the first global forum convened to provide researchers, research administrators, research sponsors, journal editors, representatives from professional societies, policymakers, and others an opportunity to discuss strategies for harmonizing research misconduct policies and fostering responsible conduct in research. The Conference was initiated and organized by the US Office of Research Integrity (ORI, Department of Health and Human Services) and the European Science Foundation (ESF), with additional support from other Conference partners. A total of 275 participants from 47 countries attended the four-day event.
Research integrity is a broad umbrella concept that can include different interests and concerns. It can be discussed in relationship to individuals or institutions. It encompasses the focused problems of detecting and responding to the most egregious misbehaviors (research misconduct) as well the broad ideals set out in codes and best practices that all researchers should follow, even if many do not. There are, as well, national, institutional, and disciplinary differences that need to be addressed.