Investigation of misconduct in Finland

The Finnish Advisory Board on Research Integrity, which is appointed by The Ministry of Education and Culture, has published guidelines for the responsible conduct of research and for handling alleged violations of conduct (the RCR guidelines) in co-operation with the Finnish research community. The objective is to promote the responsible conduct of research (in Finnish hyvä tieteellinen käytäntö) while ensuring that the alleged violations are handled with competence, fairness and expediency.

The RCR guidelines provide researchers with a model for the responsible conduct of research. The effectiveness of these guidelines is based on a voluntary commitment by the research community to adhere to them, and to increase awareness of the principles of research integrity. The RCR guidelines apply to all academic disciplines in Finland, and a list of the organisations committed to these guidelines can be found on the Advisory Board’s website. (See Finnish page Sitoutuneet organisaatiot).

The objective of these guidelines is to promote the responsible conduct of research and to prevent misconduct in research  in all organisations involved in research work, such as universities, research institutes and universities of applied sciences. These guidelines are also to be adhered to, whenever applicable, when co-operating with enterprises and other partners, either nationally or internationally.

The premise of the RCR guidelines is that promoting the responsible conduct of research and handling alleged violations are primarily the responsibility of the organisations conducting research. When alleged  misconduct has been reported and the report has been finalised by the organisation, the party dissatisfied with the ruling may request a statement from the Advisory Board. In its other activities, the Advisory Board focuses on promoting the responsible conduct of research, as well as formulating and publicising common guidelines in co-operation with the research organisations.

In addition to the RCR guidelines, The Advisory Board has published the guidelines entitled "Ethical principles of research in the humanities and social and behavioural sciences and proposals for ethical review" and, in co-operation with the research community, has formulated a model CV for researchers, Template for researcher´s curriculum vitae. (See TENK Guidelines)

The current RCR guidelines have been applied since March 1, 2013. Earlier RCR guidelines (2002) are used for handling of missconduct cases before March 1, 2013. (See TENK guidelines)