For a reliable science and innovation: Current challenges and the response of Research Integrity

24 May 202312:15
Dr. Panagiotis Kavouras


The debates on the so-called Reproducibility or Replicability crisis,1 gave birth to a framework of knowledge that aims to codify good research practices and to study the underlying causes for the production and publication – in some cases – of unreliable research results. This body of knowledge, which tends to be institutionalized as an autonomous research field, is called "Research Integrity".
The causes of the reproducibility crisis, according to our current knowledge, lie both within (e.g. erroneous design, execution, analysis and interpretation of an experiment) and outside (e.g. pressure to publish) research practice per se. These seem to be symptoms of deeper causes, such as insufficient training in Research Methodology, the dominance of quantitative indicators for the assessment of a researcher or a research organization, or job insecurity of an ever increasing portion of the researchers on a global level.
The lecture is composed of the following sections: (a) a reference to the conditions within which the field of Research Integrity emerged, (b) a brief description of the concepts of "research fraud" and "Questionable Research Practices", (c) the connection of Research Integrity with a more efficient conversion of research results into innovation and (d) the measures currently implemented or planned.
The discussions around Research Integrity are of great importance for societies, due to the global challenges, like the pandemic and climate change, humanity faces. In any case, the concerns raised by the reproducibility crisis should not diminish neither humanity's wider trust in science and scientists not its commitment to rationality.