Conducting Research Responsibly

Our Dedication to Research Integrity

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, in coordination with Harvard Medical School, is committed to ensuring the integrity of the research mission and making sure that research is conducted in accordance with the highest professional, ethical and legal standards. Research misconduct is defined as fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing or reviewing research, and/or in reporting research results.

  • Fabrication is making up data or results and recording or reporting them.
  • Falsification is manipulating research materials, equipment, or processes, or changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the research record.
  • Plagiarism is appropriating another person’s ideas, processes, results, or words without giving appropriate credit.

Research misconduct is …

  • When there is a significant departure from accepted practices of the relevant research community
  • When a person committed the misconduct intentionally, knowingly or recklessly; and
  • When the allegation is proven by a preponderance of the evidence

Research misconduct is not …

  • Disputes regarding honest error or good faith differences in interpretations or judgments of data
  • Authorship disputes such as complaints about the appropriate ranking or inclusion / exclusion of co-authors

Report a Concern

If you have reason to believe that research misconduct has occurred, BIDMC recommends that you have a discussion with the institution’s Research Integrity Officer (RIO) to discuss your concerns. The RIO is responsible for assessing research misconduct claims, determining when the research claim needs to move into an Inquiry for fact-finding purposes, and ensuring that the institution’s policy and procedures are followed properly (RS-06 Responding to Allegations of Research Misconduct).

Andi Hernandez, Vice President of Research Operations, serves as the institution’s Research Integrity Officer. You may contact her by email.

If you prefer to report a research compliance concern anonymously, you may do so confidentially and anonymously at: