Conflict of interest in RCR process decision-making (TENK 2021:21)

TENK received a request for a statement from professor A expressing dissatisfaction with the university’s handling of a suspected RCR violation. A’s allegations were directed at director B because B had not consulted A as part of the preliminary inquiry. A also argued that rector C would be biased in taking decisions on A’s case due to conflict of interest.

According to the RCR guidelines, one of the key starting points for responsible conduct of research is that researchers refrain from all decision-making situations related to science and research if there is reason to suspect that they are biased. However, bias is not an RCR violation in accordance with the RCR 2012 guidelines. According to TENK, C had, at his own discretion, been able to either excuse himself or not in this RCR process launched by A, because the allegation discussed in it did not concern him.

TENK stated that B had not committed an RCR violation and that X had carried out the RCR process in accordance with the TENK guidelines.

Statement 22 (TENK 2021:22): A joint article cited the author’s previous joint publications in a deficient and inappropriate manner. Nevertheless, the criteria for plagiarism were not met.