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J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2014 Mar;29(3):422-7. doi: 10.1111/jgh.12500.

Research misconduct: a grand global challenge for the 21st Century.

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  • 1University of Sussex, Brighton, UK.


Research misconduct is now acknowledged to be an important global issue for both researchers and the wider community. Guidance on the responsible conduct of research is now widespread, but many are still concerned by the apparent rising tide of serious cases of research misconduct, and perhaps the more worrying widespread presence of questionable research practices. I would suggest that guidance and training, while essential, are not sufficient. Additional interventions, including enhanced monitoring of research outputs and random audit using the available technology should be considered, as should the desirability of having a register of "licensed researchers." In addition, I would support a culture change in the research community in which researchers are encouraged to admit their mistakes; this should be accompanied by a spirit of forgiveness and programmed rehabilitation for the individual concerned. For multiple "premier league" offenders who are reluctant to face their misdemeanors, it is difficult to see how they could continue in the role of a researcher, and their "registration" should be revoked. Research is increasingly undertaken by researchers who cross national boundaries. The globalization of research demands greater collaboration between organizations that are responsible for ensuring standards of research integrity; the need for international standards and guidance has never been greater.

© 2013 Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology Foundation and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.


prevention and detection of research misconduct; questionable research practices; research integrity; research misconduct

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