RCUK Policy and Code on Conduct and the Governance of Good Research Conduct

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    Sarah Louise Bulloch’s post on RCUK Policy is interesting, as it has already come into force at the time of writing this note. I am interested in the research of Governance. The word Governance, in the context of RCUK Policy Statement, is used only once i.e. at the title of the Policy Statement. One Section analyses Guidelines for the Management of Good Research Conduct, mentioning therein mentoring and ethical approval standards, besides others. The other two sections elaborates on a. Unacceptable Research Conduct and b. Guidelines for the Reporting and Investigation of Unacceptable Research Conduct.

    Section 1 is more important i.e. mentoring and section 2 and 3, in my opinion arise only if there is lack of Governance. The RCUK Policy Statement should have addressed the issue of Governance on Management of Good Research Conduct. Governance presupposes Responsibility and Accountability. The objective of the research is to come out with a unique intellectual effort bringing about knowledge for all to share. Knowledge is the goal of ethics. Emphasizing on fabrication or plagiarism gives a feeling that the objective of research is to have a doctorate degree. The said Policy Statement was sent to all heads of universities, colleges, Research Council institutes and RCUK recognised research organisations. They should have been guided as to the Governance aspects of under the first section: Guidelines for the Management of Good Research Conduct. RCUK Policy Statement fails to address this critical issue, so as to encourage the Research in its true form.

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