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Governance Minutes Archive

November 8, 1989

                                    Minutes

                            COMMISSION ON RESEARCH

                               November 8, 1989

                            President's Board Room

                                   3:30 p.m.

 

 

  MEMBERS PRESENT:  L. J. Arnold, F. M. Asche, E. G. Henneke, W. Flowers, G.

                    R. Hooper, W. G. Huber, P. L. Knox, J. Randolph, E. R.

                    Stout, W. Stutzman, L. A. Swiger.

 

  MEMBERS ABSENT:    G. E. Bunce, D. M. Denbow, V. R. Fu, J. C. Lee, M.

                    Potts, R. S. Russell, M. G. Squires, H. H. Stoevener.

 

  INVITED GUESTS:    J. Eaton (for R. Teekell), K. Heidbreder, T. Hurd, P.

                    Scanlon, A. Snoke.

 

 

 

  1.  Announcements:

 

      a.  Director of Sponsored Programs:  Dr. Stout announced the selection

          of Tom Hurd as Director of Sponsored Programs and welcomed him to

          the Commission.

 

      b.  Commonwealth Center in Applied Mathematics:  SCHEV has recommended

          to the Department of Planning and Budget that it be funded at the

          level requested.

 

      c.  Dean Huber:  Dean Bill Huber has resigned his administrative duties

          in the College of Veterinary Medicine.  The Chairman thanked him

          for his service to the Commission.

 

      d.  Dr. Hooper reported on a study performed by the Research Division

          on good researchers/good teachers.  The study found the good teach-

          ers had comparable research records to the good researchers.

 

  2.  Adoption of the agenda with one addition under Other - Signature au-

      thority on grants and contracts.  Agenda was adopted.

 

  3.  Minutes of October 11, 1989.  Minutes were adopted.

 

  4.  PHS Final Rule on Misconduct in Science.  The Public Health Service has

      adopted a final rule on Misconduct in Science as published in the Fed-

      eral Register on August 8, 1989 (42 CFR Part 50).  The rule applies to

      institutions applying for or receiving financial assistance from PHS

      agencies, principally the National Institutes of Health and the Centers

      for Disease Control.  The rule defines Misconduct in Science as "Fabri-

      cation, falsification, plagiarism, or other practices which seriously

      deviate from those that are commonly accepted within the scientific

      community for proposing, conducting, or reporting research.  It does

      not include honest error or honest differences in interpretations or

      judgments of data."  The rule requires that each applicable institution

      "to establish uniform policies and procedures for investigating and re-

      porting instances of alleged or apparent misconduct involving research

      or research training, applications for support of research or research

      training, or related research activities that are supported with funds

      made available under the PHS act".

 

      Upon receipt of an allegation of misconduct in science, the institution

      must conduct an inquiry that must be completed within 60 calendar days.

      This is basically a determination of whether or not there is sufficient

      evidence to go forward.  The second phase is an investigation if the

      inquiry warrants it.  The investigation must begin within 30 calendar

      days of the inquiry report and must be completed within 120 days.  The

      Office of Scientific Integrity, a component of the Office of the Direc-

      tor of the National Institutes of Health, must be informed of the con-

      clusions at each step of the process.

 

      For a discussion of the institutional response which is required by

      January 1, 1990, the Commission invited Kay Heidbreder, Associate Gen-

      eral Counsel, Dr. Patrick Scanlon, President of the Faculty Senate and

      Dr. Arthur Snoke, Chairman of Degree Requirements, Standards, Criteria

      and Academic Policies Committee of the Commission on Graduate Studies.

      Ms. Heidbreder reviewed the requirements of the Misconduct in Science

      rule and pointed out areas where she believes we are not in compliance.

 

      a.  The University does not have a definition of Misconduct in Science.

 

      b.  We do not have procedures in place to satisfy the inquiry and in-

          vestigative phases of the rule nor to meet the time requirements.

 

      c.  The procedures of the Faculty Ethics Committee require a written

          allegation of an ethics violation.  The PHS rule requires "protect-

          ing, to the maximum extent possible, the privacy of those who in

          good faith report apparent misconduct".  Under the Freedom of In-

          formation statutes, the University would most likely be compelled

          to produce all written materials including the written allegation.

          Such action would be inconsistent with protecting the privacy of

          the complainant.

 

      Dr. Scanlon is concerned that the Misconduct in Science rule require-

      ment could be used as a mechanism for administrative charges of ethics

      violations in contrast to the "faculty policing faculty" ideal of the

      current faculty ethics policy.  Ms. Heidbreder pointed out that

      allegations of misconduct could go beyond faculty to include students

      and classified staff.  Dr. Scanlon pointed out that allegations could

      involve financial irregularities.  He believes there would be resist-

      ance from the faculty for the Faculty Ethics Committee to accept

      charges brought by these other than faculty.

 

      Dr. Arnold is concerned about multiple jurisdictions.  Allegations of

      misconduct against a member of a group within the University community

      (faculty, classified staff, students) must have a single jurisdictional

      route.

 

      Dr. Hooper suggested that in view of the very tight time frame for the

      institution to respond (Jan. 1, 1990) that temporary or interim proce-

      dures might be satisfactory to the PHS.  We would then develop compre-

      hensive Misconduct in Science procedures and carry them through the

      governance system this year.

 

      The Commission directed Dr. Scanlon, Dr. Eng, Chairman of the Commis-

      sion on Faculty Affairs and Dr. Stout to draft an interim response.

 

  5.  Signature Authority for Sponsored Projects.  In response to a question

      by Dr. Henneke, Dr. Stout responded that only the principal investi-

      gator of a grant or contract is empowered to initiate charges against

      that project.  When personnel appointments arrive in the Office of

      Sponsored Programs, a check is made to see that the college dean or his

      designee has approved.  We assume if the dean has approved the signa-

      tures of the department head and the principal investigator are valid.

 

  6.  Adjournment:  Meeting was adjourned at 4:45PM.

 

 

  ERS/php

 

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