2．社会科学、人文学科、法学和宗教学 科研伦理指南 （节选）
4．General guidelines for research ethics
5．Guidelines for Research Ethics in the Social Sciences, Humanities, Law and Theology （excerpts）
6．Guidelines for Research Ethics in Science and Technology（excerpts）
有关原创、公开和信赖的科研规范可能会和其他当事人限制或控制科研活动的欲望相冲突。必须保护科研活动不受来自外部或内部对明确定义问题探索的压力，这些压力错综复杂，可能来自财政、政治、社会、文化或者是宗教利益、宗教传统。这也是为什么在2007年为学术自由立法的原因，指令学术组织促进和保护学术自由。 不过，Universities and Colleges Act此部法律汇编只有保护科研独立这一条准则，但如今的法律中，教学和科研还必须遵守社会公认的科学准则和道德准则。论证的合理性和相关性，证明材料的质量是研究结论和发展新知识的基础，而不是科研界内外任何已存在的利益、传统。
在基础研究、应用研究和委托研究中，科研独立性的程度有所不同。尽管如此，任何合理和尽责的科研活动都应免受外界压力。此外根据教育和研究部的Standard agreement for research and report（2012）中的规定，需指定针对大学和学院外部的委托研究的保护科研诚信的规则。
Research is of great importance – to individuals, to society and to global development. Research also exercises considerable power at all these levels. For both these reasons, it is essential that research is undertaken in ways that are ethically sound.
• Respect. People who participate in research, as informants or otherwise, shall be treated with respect.
• Good consequences. Researchers shall seek to ensure that their activities produce good consequences and that any adverse consequences are within the limits of acceptability.
• Fairness. All research projects shall be designed and implemented fairly.
• Integrity. Researchers shall comply with recognized norms and to behave responsibly, openly and honestly towards their colleagues and the public.
1 Quest for truth. Research activity is a quest for new knowledge, with critical and systematic verification and peer review. Honesty, openness, systematicness and documentation are fundamental preconditions for achieving this goal.
2 Academic freedom. Research institutions shall assist in ensuring the researchers’ freedom in their choice of topic and methodology, implementation of research and publication of results. In commissioned research, the commissioning agency has the right to define the topic, research questions and scope of the research assignment in cooperation with the person or institution undertaking the assignment. The commissioning agency should not seek to unduly influence choice of methodology, implementation or publication.
3 Quality. Research should be of high academic quality. The researcher and institution are required to possess the necessary competence, design relevant research questions, undertake suitable choices of methodology and ensure sound and appropriate project implementation in terms of data collection, data processing and safekeeping/storage of the material.
4 Voluntary informed consent. Consent is the main rule in research on individuals or on information and material that can be linked to individuals. This consent should be informed, explicit, voluntary and documentable. Consent presupposes the capacity to give such consent. To ensure real voluntariness, vigilance must be exercised in cases where the participant is in a dependency relationship to the researcher or in a situation of restricted freedom.
5 Confidentiality. As a general principle, those who are made the subjects of research are entitled to have their personal information treated confidentially. The researcher must prevent any use and communication of information that might inflict damage on individuals who are the subjects of research. Irrespective of the duty of confidentiality, researchers have a legal obligation to avoid punishable offences. The researcher must decide when and in what way the participant should be informed about limitations of the duty of confidentiality.
6 Impartiality. Impartiality means avoidance of confusing roles and relationships in a way that may give rise to reasonable doubt concerning conflicts of interest. Openness regarding relevant roles and relationships that the researcher is involved in must be maintained in relation to colleagues, research participants, sources of finance and other relevant parties.
7 Integrity. The researcher is responsible for the trustworthiness of his or her own research. Fabrication, falsification, plagiarism and similar serious violations of good academic practice are incommensurate with such trustworthiness.
8 Good reference practice. Researchers must adhere to good reference practices, which fulfil requirements for verifiability and form the basis for further research.
9 Collegiality. Researchers must show each other respect. They must agree on and comply with good practices for data ownership and sharing, authorship, publication, peer review and cooperation in general.
10 Institutional responsibility. The responsibility for ethical conduct rests not only with the individual researcher, but also with the research institution. The institution is responsible for ensuring compliance with good academic practice and for establishing mechanisms that can address cases of suspected violations of ethical research norms.
11 Availability of results. As a main rule, research results should be made available. Openness regarding research findings is essential for ensuring verifiability, for returning some benefit to the research participants and society in general, and for ensuring a dialogue with the public. Such communication is also a function of democracy.
12 Social responsibility. Researchers have an independent responsibility to ensure that their research will be of benefit to research participants, relevant groups or society in general, and for preventing it from causing harm. Research decisions must take into account any knowledge that the development of a research area may entail ethically unacceptable consequences for individuals, animals, society or the environment. It is absolutely essential that when participating in public debate, the researcher clearly distinguishes between professional comments made in his or her capacity as an expert on the one hand and statements of personal opinion on the other, and refrains from abusing his or her authority.
13 Global responsibility. Research institutions and researchers have a responsibility to communicate relevant knowledge to regions that are otherwise excluded for reasons of economic disadvantage. Research should help counteract global injustice and preserve biological diversity.
14 Laws and regulations. In the field of research, there are national laws and regulations as well as applicable international conventions and agreements, and researchers and research institutions must abide by these.
A） RESEARCH, SOCIETY AND ETHICS
1 Norms and values of research
Researchers are obliged to comply with recognised norms of research ethics. Research is a quest for new and improved or deeper insight. It is a systematic and socially organised activity governed by various specific and values. The most fundamental obligation of science is the pursuit for truth. At the same time, research can never fully achieve this goal. Most conclusions are contingent and limited. Nevertheless, the norms of science have a value in themselves as guidelines and regulatory principles for the research community’s collective pursuit for truth.
In the humanities and social sciences, involvement and interpretation are often integral parts of the research process. Different academic approaches and theoretical positions may also allow for different, but nonetheless reasonable, interpretations of the same material. Consequently, it is important to reflect on and account for how one’s own values and attitudes affect the choice of topic, data sources and interpretations. Integrity in documentation, consistency in argumentation, impartiality in assessment and openness regarding uncertainty are common obligations in research ethics, irrespective of the values, positions or perspectives of the researchers.
2 Freedom of research
Both researchers and research institutions are responsible for preserving the freedom and independence of research, especially when the topic is controversial or when strategic or commercial considerations impose pressure and constraints on research. Scientific norms regarding originality, openness and trustworthiness may conflict with the desire of other parties to prevent or govern research. Research must be safeguarded against internal or external pressure that limits the exploration of well-defined problems that may intersect financial, political, social, cultural or religious interests and traditions. This is part of the reason why academic freedom was made statutory in 2007, ordering institutions to promote and protect academic freedom. However, the independence of research exists as a norm independently of this codification, while at the same time the law now states that teaching and research must comply with recognised scientific and ethical principles.
It is the soundness and relevance of the arguments and the quality of the documentation that should provide the foundation for research based conclusions – and for knowledge production in research in general – not any established interests and traditions in or outside the research community.
The duty and obligation of openness and publication means that neither researchers nor research institutions may withhold or selectively report results and conclusions. Any attempts to impose or dictate what results the research should lead to, are illegitimate. This calls for arrangements to ensure both the independence of institutions and the independence of researchers within the institutions. Research presupposes the freedom to seek, produce and disseminate scientific knowledge to the wider public.
The level of independence varies between basic, applied and commissioned research. All research must nonetheless be protected from pressure that endangers good and responsible research. In addition, commissioned research outside the university and university college sector must also have procedures for protecting the integrity of research, as set out in the Ministry of Education and Research’s «Standard agreement for research and report assignments» (2012）.
3 Responsibility of research
Responsible research requires freedom from control and constraints, while trust in research requires the exercise of responsibility by both researchers and research institutions.
Scientific, ethical and legal norms and values regulate the responsibility of research. Research also has a social responsibility, whether it be instrumental as a foundation for societal decisions, critical as a source of correctives and alternative choices of action, or deliberative as a supplier of research-based knowledge to the public discourse.
Great demands are placed on the justifications of the researchers for their choice of questions, methods and analytical perspectives, and also on the quality of the documentation used to support conclusions, so that preconceived notions and unwitting opinions have minimal influence on the research. The methodological requirements posed by the research community in respect of argumentation, reasoning, documentation and willingness to revise opinions in the light of well-founded criticism may serve as a model for how to deal with disagreement in other segments of society.
Research is valuable, but it can also cause harm. Good and responsible research also includes assessing unintended and undesirable consequences. Researchers must make sure that the research does not violate laws and regulations, or represent a risk to poeple, society and nature – in accordance with the principles of sustainability and precaution in research ethics.
4. Responsibility of institutions
Research institutions must guarantee that research is good and responsible by preventing misconduct and promoting the guidelines for research ethics.
The institutions must facilitate the development and maintenance of good scientific practice. They should communicate the guidelines for research ethics to their employees and students, and also provide training in research ethics and the relevant rules of law that govern research. This would facilitate individual reflection on research ethics and good discussions in the research communities about norms and dilemmas related to research ethics.
The institutions must ensure that they manage the guiding and advisory function of research ethics properly, so that the distribution of roles and responsibilities is clear. In this context, the guidelines for research ethics will be an important tool for preventing undesirable practice and ensuring that research is good and responsible. The institutions should also have clear procedures for handling suspicions and accusations of serious breaches of good scientific practice, for example by establishing misconduct committees with responsibility for oversight and investigation.
D）THE RESEARCH COMMUNITY
Researchers must observe good publication practice, respect the contributions of other researchers, and observe recognised standards of authorship and cooperation.
Academic publishing is critical for ensuring that research is open and accountable. At the same time, publishing raises different ethical challenges and dilemmas. The research community is characterised by strong competition and great pressure to publish, which often puts pressure on recognised norms of research ethics. For example, the norm of originality may easily conflict with the norm of humility, and differences in authority and power may easily come into conflict with integrity and impartiality. Co-authorship is also linked to the distribution of responsibilities among different contributors.
In principle, four criteria define rightful authorship. They must all be met, as stated in the recommendations of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE）:
1 The researcher must have made a substantial contribution to the conception and design or the data acquisition or the data analysis and interpretation; and
2 the researcher must have contributed to drafting the manuscript or critical revision of the intellectual content of the publication; and
3 the researcher must have approved the final version before publication; and
4 the researcher must be able to accept responsibility for and be accountable for the work as a whole (albeit not necessarily all technical details） unless otherwise specified.
It is common practice in the humanities and social sciences to require that co-authors have actually helped write and complete the manuscript. Only those who have actually contributed to the analysis and writing of a scientific work may be credited as co-authors. In other words, it is not enough to have contributed to the intellectual work with the article in a broad sense, for example a combination of data acquisition, critical revision and approval of the end product. Other contributors must be credited or thanked in footnotes or a closing note (Acknowledgements）.
All forms of honorary authorship are unacceptable. Authorship must be limited to persons who have provided significant intellectual input to the research. General guidance, provision of funding or data acquisition do not in themselves qualify for co-authorship.
An agreement must be made as early as possible in the research process, not least in large and interdisciplinary research projects, as to who will be listed as the co-authors of a publication, and how responsibilities and tasks are to be distributed among the authors.
26 Good citation practice
All researchers and students are obliged to follow good citation practice. This is a prerequisite for critical examination and important for enabling further research.
Researchers and students are under an obligation to provide accurate references to the literature they use, whether this is primary or secondary literature. This must be accounted for explicitly, also when re-using text from one’s own publications (so-called «duplication» or more misleadingly referred to as «self-plagiarism»） in the form of proper citation, for example in a preface or in footnotes. When researchers and students obtain information from sources outside their research – such as public documents or the internet – they must provide accurate references that make it possible to trace the information back to the source.
References should usually specify chapters or pages, so that other persons can check the quotes and references. This enables critical examination of assertions and arguments, including of how the sources are used.
Both scientific disciplines and research institutions are responsible for establishing and communicating rules for good citation practice, as well as for creating understanding of these norms, ensuring compliance, and reacting to misconduct. Each researcher or student must conduct their research with integrity, and handle their sources honestly. Supervisors have a special responsibility for following up students’ knowledge of and attitudes towards research ethics, so that they may exercise good citation practice in future work.
Plagiarism is unacceptable and constitutes a serious breach of recognised norms of research ethics.
A plagiarist undermines not only his or her own reputation as a researcher, but also the credibility of the research. Both researchers and research institutions are responsible for preventing plagiarism.
Plagiarism in research ethics is taking something from someone else and presenting it as one’s own without correctly citing their sources. Plagiarism violates the duty of truthfulness in science, and the requirement of originality, humility and collegiality. Researchers who build on the work of others must cite their sources in accordance with good practice.
The most obvious type of plagiarism is pure duplication. Plagiarism can nonetheless take other forms, for example the use of ideas, hypotheses, concepts, theories, interpretations, designs, illustrations, results etc. Citing another work early in one’s own text and then making extensive further use of it without subsequent citation may also be plagiarism.
It is important to distinguish between direct quotes and paraphrasing in footnotes and endnotes as well as in the text. Paraphrasing must not be so close to the original text that it in reality constitutes a quote. If several paraphrases are connected, the entire interpretation and argumentation may be based on the work of others. If so, this may also constitute plagiarism.
28 Scientific integrity
Both researchers and research institutions must promote norms for good scientific practice.
Scientific integrity is about maintaining and complying with good scientific practice.
Misconduct is serious breach of good scientific practice associated with the collective commitment to the pursuit for truth. Researchers have an obligation to truthfulness, and scientific misconduct implies misleading others through lying, concealment or distortion.
The most serious examples of misconduct are fabrication and falsification of data and plagiarism. The norm of scientific integrity applies in full to all types of research and in every stage of the research process.
Institutions are required to have routines that promote integrity and prevent misconduct. Institutions must also have procedures for handling suspicions and accusations of scientific misconduct.
34 Different types of research
Both researchers and research institutions must ensure that the funding and organisation of research is not in conflict with the norms of open, reliable and independent research.
An overarching responsibility of research policy is to maintain the balance between different types of research, both between different disciplines and between commissioned research and researcher-driven research (pure and applied research）. Different types of funding and organisation give rise to different research ethics issues and dilemmas in the relationship between science and society. Many of the challenges that used to be restricted to commissioned research, relating to norms such as openness, accountability and independence, may be equally relevant today for other types of research as well.
Research communities interact with society in general. When society funds research, it is because it expects something in return. Society’s expectations concerning utility and relevance are not irreconcilable with the requirement that research must be free and independent, but this places demands on transparency with respect to terms of contract, ownership, confidentiality and the right to publish.
Knowledge is a collective good, and if research becomes too privatised, it will inhibit both the development of knowledge and the contribution of research to society. At the same time, commissioned research, where external principals decide on the subject, are an important part of society’s aggregate knowledge development. For that reason, there must be a balance between commissioned research and researcher-driven research. Research funders should be aware of established standards for the organisation of research and reporting assignments.
35 Commissioned research
Both public and private commissioners have a legitimate right to set the parameters for research assignments, as long as those parameters does not conflict with the other requirements made with regard to the research. However, that does not exempt researchers and research institutions from their share of the responsibility for the agreements they sign with commissioners.
Researchers and research institutions do not merely report their own results; they also represent the credibility of the research community as a reliable source of knowledge. The commissioner has a right to steer or influence the subject and issues addressed, but not the choice of method, results or conclusions drawn by the researcher on the basis of the results. Both researchers and research institutions have a right and a duty to point out the uncertainties and limitations of the research, for example when the results are to be used in policy decisions.
36 The responsibility of researchers in large projects
Researchers who take part in large research projects have a shared responsibility for those projects. It should be clear how an individual researcher has contributed to a research project.
When research is organised into large, hierarchically managed projects, the relationship between individual researchers and the project management is analogous to the relationship between the researcher/research institution and the commissioner. If researchers experiences a conflict between loyalty to the institution or project and an ethically acceptable approach, the basic principle is that the individual researcher has a responsibility for their own participation. Researchers are also responsible for disclosing circumstances that are not acceptable according to research ethics.
Copyright and the right to publish must be regulated by explicit agreements. This also applies to the relationship between the commissioner, the research institution and the researcher in connection with commissioned research and reports.
37 Independence and conflict of interests
Both researchers and research institutions should maintain their independence in relation to their principals.
Both researchers and research institutions must avoid becoming dependent on their commissioners. Dependence may undermine their impartiality and the scientific quality of the research. This is particularly true if a single commissioner is responsible for a substantial portion of the researcher’s or research institution’s funding. It is therefore important for the researcher/institution and the commissioner not to have convergent interests to the point that they threaten the independence of the research (the vested interest threat）. The sale of advisory or consulting services to actors who also have an interest in the research having a particular outcome may increase the vested interest threat.
Non-financial factors may also threaten independent research. Personal ties, either through family relations or as a result of long-term connections between the research institution/researcher and those taking part in the research projects may lead to dependence in several ways. These ties may lead to the research being used to promote the views and interests of certain parties (representative party threat）, or it may lead to there not being sufficient distance between the researcher and the participants (threat to confidentiality）, or it may lead to independence being threatened because the participants are in a position where they can influence the researcher (threat of pressure）.
In some situations, the role of independent research may come into conflict with other roles the researcher may have, for example as adviser or consultant. If a researcher accepts an assignment that may undermine the institution’s credibility, it is necessary to report the situation at the very least. In some situations, the conflict between roles will be so strong that the roles should not be combined.
38 Transparency in research funding
Both researchers and commissioners have a duty to make it publicly known who is funding the research.
It must be clear who is funding the research. Transparency concerning funding makes it easier for researchers to protect themselves against undue pressure and thus ensure the freedom and independence of the research. Moreover, commissioners have a reasonable claim to have their funding of research publicly known.
When researchers are going to publish and use results, they have an independent responsibility to be open and transparent about all ties (commissioners and funding etc.） that might have a bearing on the credibility of the research/reporting that has been conducted.
39 Presentation and use of results
Both researchers and commissioners have a responsibility to prevent research results from being presented in a misleading manner. It is unethical to delimit the subject of the research with a view to producing particularly desirable results, or to present research results in an intentionally skewed manner.
Commissioners may not withhold research results in such a way that the findings that are made public give a distorted picture of one or more circumstances. Researchers must be protected against undue pressure from the commissioner to draw particular conclusions, and in certain situations should invoke their right to withdraw from assignments.
Commissioners must accept that researchers have a right to discuss their mandates as part of research reporting: for example, to point out that perspectives, interpretations or considerations of manifest professional or practical relevance have been omitted from the mandate. The requirements regarding source material and valid reasoning are especially important when research may have consequences for the reputation or integrity of individuals or groups, or when it may affect political decisions. In such cases, it is particularly important for researchers to discuss alternative interpretations of their findings, or to point out scientific uncertainty. If the results are used in a selective or tendentious manner by a commissioner, researchers has an obligation to point this out, and to demand that the misleading presentation be corrected.
40 Right and duty to publish
Knowledge is a collective good, and as a general rule, all results should be published. This is also important to enable the results to be critically examined or re-used.
Generally, researchers have a right and duty to publish complete descriptions and results of research projects. This may be important both for preventing research results from being presented selectively or in a skewed manner, and for giving others the opportunity to test the results.
However, private companies and government agencies may have a legitimate desire to protect themselves and their interests. Both negotiating strategies and the interests of national security may dictate that publication should be postponed or, in special cases, that the results should not be published. With exceptions for such situations and privacy considerations, commissioners and researchers should endeavour to ensure that the public has access to results. Any restrictions on the right to publish must be stipulated by contract at the start of the project.
F）DISSEMINATION OF RESEARCH
41 Dissemination as an academic responsibility
Researchers and research institutions are obliged to disseminate scientific knowledge to a broader audience outside the research community.
Dissemination of research involves communicating scientific results, methods and values from specialised research fields to people outside the disciplines. Dissemination may be aimed at researchers in other disciplines, or at a broader audience. It may be a matter of disseminating established insights into the discipline, or results from more recent research.
The relationship between research and reporting is especially close in the humanities and social sciences, where a scholarly publication often also is a form of dissemination. In some cases there is not even a clear line between research and dissemination, because the knowledge is mediated as part of a public debate which in turn influences the research questions and answers.
One of the main reasons for dissemination of research is to satisfy the intellectual curiosity of the general public. Dissemination is also important for a well-functioning democratic society. Dissemination should contribute to maintaining and developing cultural traditions, to informing public opinion and to the dissemination of knowledge of relevance to society. Society has invested large sums in research, and therefore has a right to share the results.
42 Requirements for individuals and institutions
Research institutions must create conditions for extensive and broad dissemination of research characterised by high quality and relevance.
Research dissemination makes ethical demands on individuals and institutions alike. Universities and university colleges have a special responsibility to disseminate knowledge, results and scientific norms and values, both in their teaching of students and in relation to public administration, cultural life and business and industry. Institutions should promote dissemination, for example when appointing staff, in teaching, or through financial incentives. Institutions should also encourage dissemination in different arenas and through new kinds of learning, knowledge sharing and discourse, whether it be through the media, lecture series, conferences for non-academics or through public hearings.
Dissemination of research is also associated with freedom of expression and the infrastructure requirement in Article 100 of the Norwegian Constitution: «The authorities of the state shall create conditions that facilitate open and enlightened public discourse.» Also the academic communities must contribute to these public discourses. Constitutional democracies with well-functioning public administrations and market economies are contingent on spheres in civil society that are primarily characterised not by principles of profitability and management logic, but by the principle that it is arguments that should count.
Universities and university colleges also have a responsibility to maintain and further develop Norwegian as an academic language.A Norwegian academic language is important for disseminating results both to those involved and to the general public and in the public discourse.
Good dissemination calls for interaction and cooperation between research institutions and other institutions such as the mass media, schools, art institutions, communities with various beliefs and voluntary associations. Dissemination may take place with varying participation by researchers and others (such as journalists and teachers）, and may be written, verbal or based on other approaches (such as exhibitions and electronic media）. All those who take part in such dissemination are subject to the same norms of research ethics.
43 Interdisciplinary discourse and public deliberation
An important part of dissemination of research in a modern society emerges from the interaction between specialists in various academic disciplines and the public discourse.
Many of the major challenges facing society related, for example, to ecology, globalisation and human rights, call for interdisciplinary cooperation and the integration of academic knowledge from a number of fields. There is therefore a strong need to translate and communicate knowledge both across different disciplines and to a broader public. The development of multi-disciplinary fora at research institutions provides a good basis both for discourse among specialists and for dissemination to the broader public.
Interdisciplinary discourse can define the basic demands made of a culture of academic discourse. Researchers must express themselves clearly enough for colleagues from other fields and other participants in the discourse to take a reasoned position on their assertions. As in the case of internal academic discussions, renderings of the contributions of others must not be tendentious and persons with other opinions must not have unreasonable views falsely attributed to them.
Dissemination should be clear and plainly express both academic uncertainty and the limitations of individual disciplines. Researchers should express clearly the limitations from the perspective of their own discipline and expertise in the field in question, which may make it easier for readers and the general public to determine whether other disciplinary perspectives could lead to other interpretations. Such interdisciplinary and inter-institutional discussions can serve as a sort of extended peer review.
44 Participation in public debate
Researchers should contribute scientific arguments to the public debate. Researchers should express themselves fairly and clearly in order to avoid tendentious interpretations of research results.
When researchers take part in public debate, they are using academic expertise as a basis for contributions to the formation of public opinion. They may contribute information in an area that is being debated, they may take a reasoned position on controversial topics, or they may seek to introduce new topics onto the public agenda.
Researchers have a responsibility to express themselves clearly and precisely, so that their research cannot be interpreted tendentiously and misused in political, cultural, social and economic contexts. Researchers should also engage in discussions about reasonable interpretations and justifiable use of research results. Other organisations and institutions, such as public relations departments, the mass media, political parties, interest organisations, enterprises and administrative bodies also have a responsibility to conduct themselves reasonably and acceptably in this context.
Participation in public debates places great demands on fairness, reasoning and clarity. There may be grey areas between participation as a researcher and participation as a citizen. Researchers should state their discipline and not only their degree or position, when acting in the capacity of expert. When academics take part as citizens, they should not use their titles or refer to special academic expertise.
45 Accountability in dissemination
The requirement of accountability is equally stringent in dissemination as in publication.
The audience of popularised academic presentations cannot be expected to be able to verify assertions made by specialised researchers. Accordingly, the requirement of accountability is equally stringent in dissemination as in academic publication.
Footnotes/endnotes and reference lists may seem cumbersome, but they can also help the interested reader to navigate through a large body of literature. It is also important to remember that specialists in other disciplines are part of the relevant audience.
Researchers may share hypotheses, theories and preliminary findings with the public in the course of a project, but must be cautious about presenting preliminary results as final conclusions.
46 Reporting results to participants
Researchers have a special obligation to report results back to the participants in a comprehensible and acceptable manner.
Participants in research have a right to receive something in return. This also applies to research where large groups of informants are involved. Dissemination of research may help to meet this requirement when direct contact with each participant is not possible.
Participants must also have the opportunity to correct misunderstandings where this is possible. Dialogue between researchers and participants in the course of the research project may often strengthen the research. Researchers must present the results so that key findings and insights are communicated in a manner that can be understood by the participants.
The next guidelines concern the exercise of research ethics through good scientific practice.
4 Researchers are responsible for conducting high-quality research characterised by scientific integrity, truthfulness, and accountability, and research institutions must create conditions that promote such practice.
Scientific integrity, truthfulness, and accountability are fundamental research ethics requirements. Researchers and research institutions have an obligation to familiarise themselves with and observe research ethics guidelines that are relevant to their type of research.
Researchers are responsible for respecting the research results of others and for exercising good scientific practice. Researchers must not conceal, misrepresent or falsify anything, whether in the planning, execution or reporting of the research. Plagiarism involves presenting the ideas or research of others as one’s own.
The individual researcher has an independent responsibility not to accept departures from good scientific practice, on his or her own account or that of others.Researchers who discover or are made aware of errors in their research, must admit the error, correct it, and ensure that the consequences of the error are minimal.
Good citation practice
It is in the nature of research to build on research by others. Researchers who take advantage of the ideas and research by others, both published and unpublished, must acknowledge this accurately, so that it is clear what the researcher’s own contribution is. Researchers must give a balanced and correct presentation of the research of others. Citations make research traceable and verifiable.
Researchers and research institutions must make data available to others for verification after a certain period. If the data are not used within this period, they should be made available to other researchers.
Within the framework of existing rules and regulations, institutions should have guidelines and procedures for preserving research data, in such a way that they can be retrieved - also after researchers have finished working at the institution.
5 Researchers must respect the contributions of other researchers and observe standards of authorship and cooperation.
Researchers must observe good publication practice. They must clarify individual responsibilities in group work as well as the rules for co-authorship. Honorary authorship is unacceptable. When several authors contribute, each authorship must be justified. Justified authorship is defined by four criteria, in accordance with the criteria drawn up by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE）:
a）Researchers must have made a substantial contribution to the conception and design or the data acquisition or the data analysis and interpretation; and
b）researchers must have contributed to drafting the manuscript or critical revision of the intellectual content of the publication; and
c）researchers must have approved the final version before publication; and
d）researchers must be able to accept responsibility for and be accountable for the work as a whole (albeit not necessarily all technical details） unless otherwise specified.
All authors in a multidisciplinary publication must be able to account for the part or parts for which they have been responsible in the research work, and which part or parts are the responsibility of other contributors.
All those who meet criterion a） must be able to meet b） and c）. Contributors who do not fulfil all the criteria must be acknowledged.
6 When involved in reviewing the work of others (articles, theses, applications, positions, etc.）, researchers have a responsibility to evaluate their own qualifications and impartiality.
If they are in any doubt, researchers should not take part in the review.
When acting as peer reviewers, researchers should abide by the following rules: i） researchers must recuse themselves as reviewers if they have been in a serious conflict with the author in question or if they have a direct cooperative or competitive relationship with the author; ii） researchers must acknowledge the limitations of their expertise where necessary.
7 Researchers must comply with national and international rules and regulations established to safeguard ethical and safety interests.
Good research practice entails observing national laws and rules, both in one’s home country and abroad. This also means the researcher should carefully consider whether it is ethically defensible to comply with foreign legislation and regulations, if the ethical standards are different from those in their home country.
This implies that:
a）researchers apply for the appropriate authorisations for projects where it is required
b）researchers respect national safety standards imposed on laboratories and learn and teach others to use equipment
c）researchers do not locate parts of their research in other countries for the purpose of achieving lower ethical or safety standards
d）researchers inform funding institutions of any non-conformant ethical or safety standards in the countries in which their research is conducted.
There are a multitude of types of knowledge in all societies. Professionals as well as laypeople have different kinds of experience-based knowledge. Individuals and local communities may possess specific local knowledge. Traditional knowledge is another useful term, which the International Council for Science defines as a cumulative body of knowledge, know-how, practices, and representations maintained and developed by peoples with extended histories of interaction with the natural environment. The traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples is of this type, but this kind of knowledge is found in every community. These types of knowledge and their bearers should be treated with due respect and at the same time protected against unreasonable exploitation.
14 Researchers must acknowledge the economic and cultural value of other forms of knowledge.
Researchers who directly use or build their research on other kinds of knowledge, have an obligation to acknowledge both the economic and the cultural value of this knowledge. Where such research results in financial gains, a fair and equitable share of the gain should benefit the bearers of the traditional knowledge. The traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples has particularly strong protection against unreasonable exploitation through international conventions such as the Nagoya Protocol.
15 Where relevant, researchers should engage in dialogue with other knowledge-bearers.
Local and traditional knowledge arise from experience. Although these forms of knowledge do not necessarily meet the usual standards for scientific knowledge, they may be an important supplement to understanding the nature, environment, and living conditions of particular populations and local communities. It is therefore important for researchers to enter into a dialogue with the bearers of this knowledge, not least in applied research, which can potentially impact local communities and their living conditions. International organisations have placed particular emphasis on the need to respect and use the traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples in environmental research. This implies that when scientific knowledge or technology is applied, researchers should be open to utilising relevant kinds of knowledge.
16 Research should involve the affected parties where relevant.
Researchers must use appropriate methods to ensure that the affected parties are involved. Citizen participation may provide a democratic corrective to choices as to what research should focus on and be aimed at. The participation of users, citizens, and other social actors is laid down in a series of international conventions, including the Aarhus Convention.
On occasion, conflicts may arise between the individual researcher and a senior or an authority. This is particularly problematic when the conflict arises because the researcher regards it as his or her ethical duty to act as a whistleblower, sometimes contrary to the advice of a superior or authority. Instances of whistleblowing may concern internal matters in the research, such as scientific integrity, or they may pertain to matters of societal significance. As whistleblowing of this kind is based on discretionary assessments, it often creates a basis for unresolved conflicts. The institution must ensure that the whistleblower’s legal protection is not threatened.
19 When, in the course of their work, researchers become aware of matters that they consider to be in conflict with ethical principles or their social responsibility, they must have the possibility and, depending on the circumstances, the duty, to act as whistleblower.
In concrete terms, this means that researchers must consider carefully
a）the possibilities for resolving the conflict internally in the organisation
b）the possible consequences of such whistleblowing for the researcher personally, the research institution and society, both if the circumstances reported are correct and if they are not correct
c）the possible consequences of failing to act as a whistleblower
d）the whistleblowing channels that best lend themselves to minimise conflict and optimise actions to remedy the damage
e）possible other motives behind the whistleblowing that may affect the researcher’s own objectivity
20 Research institutions must have independent mechanisms that can support employees in whistleblowing situations.
It is important that all parties involved in a whistleblowing situation respect the fact that the process must be dealt with in a neutral manner. An independent body must investigate the conflict, and the whistleblower must be protected against unreasonable or untimely reactions.
This means that
a）research institutions must have mechanisms for taking care of both the whistleblower and the subject of the disclosure
b）research institutions must have mechanisms for conducting such an independent scrutiny of whistleblowing cases in the institution
c）these mechanisms must be known to the researchers at the institution