Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity

NWO adheres to the Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity as the guiding principle for its integrity policy. The Code of Conduct will enter into force on 1 October 2018.

The Code of Conduct defines five principles of research integrity and 61 standards for good research practices and duties of care for the institutions. This Code of Conduct ensures that the Netherlands keeps up with international developments regarding research integrity.

Which institutions are bound by this code?

This Code has been adopted by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), the Netherlands Federation of University Medical Centres (NFU), the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), Associated Applied Research Institutes (TO2 federation), the Netherlands Association of Universities of Applied Sciences and the Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU). These organizations ensure that the institutes, university medical centres, universities of applied sciences and research universities they represent or oversee also adopt this Code.  Other institutions, including private enterprises, can also adopt this Code. Read more about the scope and transitional provision in the Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity.

Principles

Principles can be regarded as ‘virtues’ of a good researcher, guiding them towards the right choices in all kinds of circumstances. These are:

  • Honesty
  • Scrupulousness
  • Transparancy
  • Independence
  • Responsibility

Standards for good research practices

The standards for good research practices set out what researchers must take into consideration in their work, individually and as a team. hey are for the most part presented separately for each individual phase of the research process: design, conduct, reporting, assessment and peer review and communication.

Institutions' duties of care

Institutions provide a working environment that promotes and safeguards good research practices. They ensure that researchers can work in a safe, inclusive and open environment where they feel responsible and accountable, can share concerns about dilemmas and can discuss errors made without fearing the consequences (‘blame-free reporting’).

Non-compliance with standards: measures and sanctions

Non-compliance with standards undermines professional responsibility, which harms the research process and the relationship between individual researchers, and possibly also trust in and the credibility of the research. The Code of Conduct for Research Integrity ·         distinguishes between research misconduct, questionable research practices, and minor shortcomings. The Code describes how an institution must address potential research misconduct. On the one hand, the Code of Conduct grants institutions adequate scope to deliver a balanced verdict regarding potential research misconduct, while on the other hand it explicitly states the criteria that play a role in such a scenario.

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Amendment Code of Conduct 2014

The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), Netherlands Federation of University Medical Centres (NFU), Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), Associated Applied Research Institutes (TO2), Netherlands Association of Universities of Applied Sciences (VH), and the Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU) all worked together intensively to thoroughly amend and expand the Code of Conduct that has been in use since 2004. This amendment process, which included a public consultation, was led by a committee chaired by Prof. Keimpe Algra.

Members advisory committee

  • Prof. Keimpe Algra (voorzitter)
  • Prof. Lex Bouter
  • Prof. Antoine Hol LLM
  • Jan van Kreveld LLM
  • Dr Daan Andriessen
  • Prof. Catrien Bijleveld LLM
  • Prof. Roberta D'Alessandro
  • Prof. Jenny Dankelman
  • Prof. Peter Werkhoven

The Netherlands Code of Conduct for Academic Practice (2014 revision) is revoked, except in respect of:
a.      research completed before this Code entered into force; and,
b.     research activities initiated before this Code entered into force and not yet completed when it did so.