Washington Update

FASEB Comments on Federal Scientific Integrity Policies

By: Yvette Seger
Thursday, August 12, 2021

On August 3, FASEB submitted comments in response to a Request for Information issued by the White House office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) seeking input on ways to improve the effectiveness of federal scientific integrity policies and enhance public trust in science. Responses will be used to inform the work of the Scientific Integrity Fast-Track Action Committee established in a Presidential Memorandum issued in January.

The RFI sought input on the effectiveness of existing federal scientific integrity policies, existing practices that could assist federal agencies in bolstering their existing scientific integrity policies, and ways in which agencies could enhance public trust in science. OSTP also convened a series of three public listening sessions to hear directly from those who produce, communicate, and use scientific and technical data.

In its comments, FASEB reiterated prior efforts related to enhancing scientific rigor and transparency, including its 2016 report on enhancing research reproducibility, a 2017 workshop on responsible communication of basic biomedical researchreports highlighting the role of shared research resources in promoting rigorous research, and 2020 feedback on ways to foster research integrity and responsible conduct of research. In addition, FASEB highlighted the importance of uniform messaging on scientific and technical issues to establish public understanding and trust and the need for a more expedient process for addressing violations of scientific integrity policies.  FASEB also suggested identifying ways to reward research teams and organizations demonstrating excellence in scientific integrity and recommended regular training in research integrity for all members of a research team, not just trainees.