Since early 2018, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has received more than 300 complaints of sexual and other harassment and approved removing 75 principal investigators (PIs) from grants as a result, the agency reported this week. That’s the eye-opening result of an update NIH provided on its efforts to address professional misconduct by agency-funded investigators.
This story from the US reiterates (at last) that you won’t be considered a scientific leader or superstar if you are a sexual harasser or indeed a bully.
The agency’s Office of Extramural Research (OER) also looks into other forms of professional misconduct—including bullying and racial discrimination, which have recently made up a greater share of the complaints (see first table, below), OER Deputy Director Michael Lauer says. He presented the data on the 314 total complaints on 10 June at a meeting of NIH’s Advisory Committee to the Director (ACD), noting that some cases involve a combination of these concerns.