Research Integrity Among PhD Students at the Faculty of Medicine: A Comparison of Three Scandinavian Universities
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionJournal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics. 2020, 15 (4), 320-329. 10.1177/1556264620929230
This study investigates research integrity among PhD students in health sciences at three universities in Scandinavia (Stockholm, Oslo, Odense). A questionnaire with questions on knowledge, attitudes, experiences, and behavior was distributed to PhD students and obtained a response rate of 77.7%. About 10% of the respondents agreed that research misconduct strictly defined (such as fabrication, falsification, and plagiarism, FFP) is common in their area of research, while slightly more agreed that other forms of misconduct is common. A nonnegligible segment of the respondents was willing to fabricate, falsify, or omit contradicting data if they believe that they are right in their overall conclusions. Up to one third reported to have added one or more authors unmerited. Results showed a negative correlation between “good attitudes” and self-reported misconduct and a positive correlation between how frequent respondents thought that misconduct occurs and whether they reported misconduct themselves. This reveals that existing educational and research systems partly fail to foster research integrity.