The Governance of Research Integrity in Canada

By Master, Zubin | Health Law Review, Summer 2012 | Go to article overview

The Governance of Research Integrity in Canada


Master, Zubin, Health Law Review


Introduction

Researchers have a moral and social contract to uphold several ethical principles in the conduct of research. Much of scientific, social science, and humanities research in many nations is paid for by society through public funds.' Hence, researchers have a social responsibility to ensure that their conduct of research is performed with the highest standards of professionalism, ethics and integrity.

The responsible conduct of research (also known as scientific or research integrity (1)) includes a set of norms and practices that applies to researchers in any discipline. Several principles underlie the responsible conduct of research (RCR), such as, honesty, carefulness, openness, fair credit, respect for colleagues, respect for human and non-human animal subjects, legality, education, and social responsibility. (2) These principles guide all aspects of RCR including research design, the collection, analysis and dissemination of results, the ethical treatment of human and animal subjects, providing appropriate credit to colleagues and students, being open to criticism and review, sharing data, reagents and methods, and avoiding conflicts of interest. A violation of these practices can lead to different harms to the researcher herself, other researchers, research subjects, or society. This can be in the form of research fraud, undermining the health and safety of research participants, preventing scientists from replicating results, or wasting resources. However, research is performed by human beings and human frailties inevitably appear, sometimes in the form of research misconduct. (3)

Much of the Canadian academic literature focuses on the ethics and governance of research involving humans, animals, and conflicts of interests. Little attention, however, has been paid to the ethics and governance of RCR. This paper aims to provide the scope of research misconduct cases reported as news in academic journals and the Canadian popular press, and review the RCR practices and policies in Canada, including various relatively recent initiatives conducted by different governmental and non-governmental organizations with the goal of strengthening the Canadian research integrity system.

Research Misbehaviours in Canadian Institutions

Awareness of RCR by scientists, bioethicists, the media, governing organizations, and the public has been heightened by widely publicized scandals of research misconduct. Many international RCR policies arose from major scandals hitting nationwide headlines and Canadian research misconduct cases have also been featured in the news.

In a large multi-centre breast cancer trial, Dr. Roger Poisson recruited patients who didn't fit the inclusion criteria claiming that he couldn't deny women the best available treatment because of a criterion that had little or no oncological importance. (4) This led to an investigation of several of his studies and in 1993, Poisson was convicted of research misconduct in the U.S. where 115 documented instances of fabrication and falsification were found. (5) Dr. Poisson, a member of the medical faculty at the University of Montreal, was forced to retire a month earlier due to these findings. (6) A second case that received considerable media attention, including an expose by CBC News, was with Ranjit K. Chandra--a retired professor at Memorial University of Newfoundland who was accused of research misconduct in several studies. (7) A third case involved plant researcher Fawzi Razem, who worked in a laboratory of a professor at the University of Manitoba and was found to have fabricated data. (8) Resigning from the University of Manitoba after the initial allegation was made, Razem later turned up to be working as faculty at the Palestine Polytechnic University. (9)

Another highly publicized case involved Dr. Eric Poehlman who was hired by the University of Montreal in 2001 while he was being investigated for fabricating research at the University of Vermont College of Medicine and previously at the University of Maryland. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Governance of Research Integrity in Canada
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.