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Faculty Handbook

4.2. 6 Research Integrity Policy

November 18, 2014

Lewis & Clark College is committed to maintaining high standards of integrity in research and scholarship, whether funded or not.

Misconduct in research is an ever-present possibility in the academic world. Several federal agencies have considered this issue. Some, including the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), require that institutions have a written policy to be eligible for research funding. While there is less than total unanimity on what constitutes misconduct in research, the categories of fabrication, falsification, plagiarism, and “other serious deviations” that appear in the annual HHS questionnaire are sufficient to cover the full range.

If an allegation of possible research misconduct is received by an official of the College, the dean will conduct an informal inquiry. (In the College of Arts and Sciences, the inquiry will be initiated by the associate dean.) The allegations and the results of the inquiry will be submitted in writing to the dean of the appropriate school. The dean shall determine whether a formal investigation is warranted. If an investigation is deemed necessary, the dean shall form a panel of three (chaired by the associate dean in the CAS). The panel must complete its work within 120 days unless there are unusual and extenuating circumstances, and will submit its conclusions in writing to the dean. The dean will review the case, and on the merits of the findings, recommend appropriate action to the president of the College. The person against whom the allegations were lodged shall receive copies of the written reports of the inquiry and investigation and shall have the right to appeal the decision to the president. Following any appeal, the president’s decision is final.

In all cases regarding possible misconduct of researchers holding federal, state, or private grants, the College will follow the guidelines issued by the respective agencies or foundations and will submit written notification, etc., as required.

The College will furnish copies of this policy to each member of the staff who receives a research grant and will publish the policy in its faculty handbook. Students involved in research will also receive a copy. Faculty or staff who direct research projects will be responsible for monitoring and assuring the integrity of the research conducted under their direction and will set high standards in this regard.

The College encourages anyone who observes research misconduct to come forward with his or her concerns. In the initial phases of inquiry, the responsible official will maintain confidentiality of an individual who comes forward with allegations. Once a formal investigation is conducted, however, such confidentiality may not be guaranteed. The institution will seek to protect the complainant against retribution but is also committed to due process and fairness toward the accused.

The document “Framework for Institutional Policies and Procedures to Deal with Misconduct in Research,” prepared by the Association of American Medical Colleges (March 1989), will be used as a guide in these matters.

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