Research Integrity Policy Statements
The fundamental plant and microbial research carried out at the John Innes Centre rarely requires the experimental use of animals. The John Innes Centre supports the essential use of animals in research and increased openness regarding such use. Any experimentation on animals carried out at the John Innes Centre is done so with the highest regard for animal welfare and under strict regulations set out by the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986.
As a signatory of the Concordat on Openness on Animal Research in the UK, the John Innes Centre agrees to abide by the following four commitments:
Commitment 1: We will be clear about when, how and why we use animals in research
Commitment 2: We will enhance our communications with the media and the public about our research using animals
Commitment 3: We will be proactive in providing opportunities for the public to find out about research using animals
Commitment 4: We will report on progress annually and share our experiences.
The John Innes Centre (JIC) is committed to achieving the highest standards of excellence and integrity in our research.
In the pursuit of excellence, it is our responsibility to ensure that our research is conducted according to appropriate ethical, legal and professional frameworks, obligations and standards. JIC provides a research environment that is underpinned by a culture of integrity and based on good governance, best practice and support for the development of researchers. Should allegations of misconduct arise we ensure a transparent, robust and fair response. Through regular monitoring and reviews of support, policies and procedures we can provide assurances on the suitability and appropriateness of the mechanisms in place to ensure the excellence and integrity of our research.
The JIC has a responsibility to ensure that the funds it disperses are properly spent, in accordance with the law, funder requirements and in the public interest. Researchers have a duty to their profession, to JIC and to research funders, to conduct their research according to best scientific practice and the highest professional standards.
To maintain the high standards of research practice, JIC will uphold the commitments outlined in Universities UK’s Concordat to Support Research Integrity.
The JIC expects all researchers, be they staff, students or visitors, to abide by national, European and international professional standards of research integrity. This includes:
Honesty and fairness in:
- reporting on research methods and procedures
- presentation of research goals, intentions and findings
- gathering data
- conveying valid interpretations and making justifiable claims based on research findings
- use and acknowledgment of the work of other researchers
Accuracy and rigour in:
- conducting research and using appropriate methods
- adhering to an agreed protocol where appropriate
- record keeping of primary data
- drawing interpretations and conclusions from the research
- communicating the results and clarifying what conclusions are based on
Openness and Transparency in:
- making research findings widely available, including sharing negative results as appropriate
- presenting the work to other researchers and to the general public
- declaring conflicts of interest beyond their own scientific integrity
- the reporting of research data collection methods
- the analysis and interpretation of data
- accountability for actions
- conducting research in keeping with academic freedom, regardless of funder of the research
- the independence of other colleagues and team members
- all participants in and subjects of research, including humans, animals, the environment and cultural objects
- the stewardship of research and scholarship for future generations
Cooperation and collegiality in scientific interactions
JIC researchers are supported to uphold these core principles through the institute’s positive action to:
- provide clear policies and procedures, and where necessary, training and guidance on research integrity
- undertake a regular internal oversight process
- ensure there are suitable mechanisms for reviewing ethical issues raised by research
- use transparent, robust and fair processes to deal with allegations of research misconduct
- reasonably defend researchers who abide by high standards, and any individual who reports misconduct
The JIC policy on scientific integrity can be read in full here: JIC policy on Scientific Integrity