Research Integrity (RI)

Last updated 19.4.2024

In Finland, for research to be ethically acceptable and reliable and for its results to be credible, the research must be conducted according to the Finnish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity (PDF)In line with the European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity, the basic principles of research integrity in the Finnish Code of Conduct are reliability, honesty, respect and accountability.

Good research practices

Research integrity (RI) consists of good research practices that ensure that research integrity is maintained throughout the whole lifecycle of the research. Good research practices are therefore also part of the quality assurance of organisations belonging in the scientific community. Failure to comply with them can, at worst, lead to an alleged violation of research integrity and a possible RI process.

In line with the European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity, good research practices can be linked to eight areas of scientific activity: 1) the research environment, 2) training, supervision and mentoring, 3) research procedures, 4) safeguards and agreements, 5) data practices and management, 6) collaborative working, 7) authorship, publishing and dissemination, and 8) reviewing and evaluating.


Finnish model of self-regulation

There are two main policies for defining research misconduct, investigating suspicions and imposing sanctions: the legal model and the self-regulation model of the scientific community.

Finland has a self-regulation system based on a national guideline prepared by the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity (TENK) on the identification and investigation of violations of research integrity. In addition to the internal regulation of the scientific community, it is based on openness and transparency of research and mutual trust between researchers and research organisations.

Responsibility for research integrity

Each individual researcher and research group member is primarily responsible for complying with the principles of research integrity. Nonetheless, the responsibility also rests on the whole research community: research groups and their principal investigators, the directors of research units and the administration of research organisations.

Universities and universities of applied sciences should ensure that their students are well versed in the principles of research integrity, and that the teaching of research integrity is integrated into their graduate and postgraduate programmes. Research institutes, for their part, should ensure that research integrity training is available for their staff. Additionally, it is the task of every research training unit to handle questions regarding research integrity that are pertinent to the respective field of education as a part of their research training programme.

The Finnish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity

The Finnish National Board on Research Integrity TENK has drawn up guidelines for research integrity and for handling alleged violations of research integrity (the RI guidelines) in co-operation with the Finnish research community. The objective of this so-called RI guideline is to promote research integrity (in Finnish ‘hyvä tieteellinen käytäntö’) while ensuring that the alleged violations are handled with competence, fairness and expediency.

Previous guidelines are located under Advice and Materials.