Honesty, accuracy, efficiency, and objectivity are important shared values among scientists and provide a foundation for the responsible conduct of research. Each RCR Topic listed below provides an Introduction, Federal Policies and Regulations, Teaching and Learning Resources, and Institutional Guidelines.


Authorship and Publication Practices

Guidelines for authorship and scientific publication are available from a number of sources - they may be structured or informal and vary across scientific disciplines. At a minimum, all forms of publication should present: a full and fair description of the work, an accurate report of the results, and an honest assessment of the findings. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Collaborative Science

Collaborative research can be simple or complex and is mutually beneficial to those involved - providing access to specific expertise or resources that are not available within one research team. Establishing and maintaining successful research collaborations includes: having a clear understanding of roles and relationships, consistent communication, effective management and recognizing differences in research fields. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Conflicts of Interest and Commitment

Conflicts of interest in research may be inevitable, but they are not inherently wrong. By nature, research is complex and can often lead to competing obligations and interests. To ensure that conflicts do not interfere with the responsible practice of research, they must be identified and managed, particularly in areas of financial gain, work commitments, and intellectual and personal matters. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Data Acquisition, Management, Sharing & Ownership

Data is essential to scientific practice. The National Academy of Sciences emphasizes that the "integrity of research data is essential for advancing science and maintaining public trust." Data management practices are complex and depend upon paying attention to the details, specifically in the areas of ownership, collection, storage, and sharing. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Intellectual Property

The formal transfer of new scientific discoveries and innovations from academic institutions to the commercial sector occurs through the licensing of Intellectual Property. Intellectual Property includes patents, copyrights, trademarks and trade secrets.

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Mentor and Trainee Responsibilities

According to the National Academy of Sciences, "a mentor is someone who takes a special interest in helping another person develop into a successful professional." Good mentoring includes: understanding mutual responsibilities; maintaining a productive and supportive research environment; providing proper supervision and review; and recognizing that the goal of the mentor-trainee relationship is to prepare trainees for the transition to independent researchers. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Peer Review

Peer review is a process where colleagues with similar knowledge and experience assess the quality and significance of scientific research - impacting funding, publication, and personnel decisions. It is an essential element of responsible scientific conduct and must be conducted in a timely, thorough, constructive, unbiased, and confidential manner. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Research Involving Animal Subjects

Federal regulations and professional guidelines are in place to assure the responsible use of animals in research. Researchers who expect to use or study living animals are responsible for: knowing what activities are subject to regulation; understanding and following the rules for project approval; obtaining appropriate training; and maintaining compliance through all stages of a project. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Research Involving Human Subjects

Research involving human subjects is governed by federal, state and local laws, regulations and policies, and relevant professional codes. Researchers who conduct studies involving human are responsible for: knowing what research is subject to regulation; understanding and following the rules for project approval; obtaining appropriate training; and maintaining compliance through all stages of a project. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Research Misconduct

Federal regulations define research misconduct as fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing or reviewing research or in reporting research results. It is important to recognize that the federal definition establishes a minimum standard for measuring acceptable behavior. (Office of Research Integrity)

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Researcher in Society

Scientific researchers can take on many roles and responsibilities for how the new knowledge generated from their work impacts society. They may serve as expert advisors, educators, mentors, communicators, or advocates, and interact with a wide range of audiences – government officials, policy makers, business leaders, colleagues, teachers, students, and the general public.

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Safe Laboratory Practices

CHOP is committed to providing a healthy and safe environment through effective communication, ongoing training, laboratory surveys, prompt reporting of concerns, and compliance with federal regulations and institutional policies. The responsible use of biological, chemical, radioactive and other hazardous materials is an important requirement for everyone working in a research lab or environment and is an essential component of research integrity.

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Unconscious Bias

Scientists are often unaware of unconscious biases that may affect their decisions in the workplace. Understanding how unconscious bias affects mentees and mentors, as well as the scientific community at large, is becoming increasingly important as we continue to strive toward new and exciting scientific innovations. The best environment for high impact scientific advancements is one where people of diverse view points and backgrounds work together to share ideas and find creative solutions.

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