An interesting open access paper from the US, published in August 2021, reflecting on structural impediments to addressing research misconduct in higher education. These are factors that will ring true in other jurisdictions. We need to do better at supporting the responsible conduct of research and research culture in our institutions.
Several widely publicized incidents of academic research misconduct, combined with the politicization of the role of science in public health and policy discourse (e.g., COVID, immunizations) threaten to undermine faith in the integrity of empirical research. Researchers often maintain that peer-review and study replication allow the field to self-police and self-correct; however, stark disparities between official reports of academic research misconduct and self-reports of academic researchers, specifically with regard to data fabrication, belie this argument. Further, systemic imperatives in academic settings often incentivize institutional responses that focus on minimizing reputational harm rather than the impact of fabricated data on the integrity of extant and future research.
Golden, J., Mazzotta, C.M. & Zittel-Barr, K. (2021) Systemic Obstacles to Addressing Research Misconduct in Higher Education: A Case Study. Journal of Academic Ethics. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10805-021-09438-w
Publisher (Open Access): https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10805-021-09438-w