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The Compliance & Integrity Goal

June 11, 2013

As with all compliance and scientific integrity issues, progress can only occur when we keep in mind the goal is not to point to people, but to data/information, practices, and management methods that appear to need revision.

Observations of research integrity issues over 25 years indicates that, at times, this is not possible without also referring to the people involved.  This too often leads to a reluctance to review apparent mistakes, ineffective or poor practices.  This is a significant barrier which I have repeatedly observed prevents people from making changes to improve our biomedical research — even those in the Responsible Conduct of Research field.  Those who are committed to integrity in biomedical research (which should be everyone in the field) must focus on fixing the problem and not the blame.  This is vital to maintaining and improving the Return On Investment on the dollars we spend on biomedical research.

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