The purpose of this policy is to prevent any misconducts related to research conducted for the journals and symposiums of the Korean Society of Microbiology and Biotechnology (KMB), and to suggest the fundamental principles and structural procedures related to research integrity deliberation required to ensure research ethics.
This RMP applies to articles printed in journals published by KMB and to abstracts published for symposiums.
Research misconduct suggested in this policy (considered “fraud”) refers to data fabrication, falsification, plagiarism, and improper authorship.
① “Fabrication” refers to the acts that create false information about non-existent data or findings
② “Falsification” refers to the acts that artificially manipulate research materials, equipment, or process and/or randomly modify or delete data resulting in distorted research contents or research results.
③ “Plagiarism” refers to the act of pirating the ideas, research contents, and research results of others without justifiable approvals or quotations.
④ “Improper authorship” refers to the situation when the person who has contributed to research contents or results is scientifically and technically unqualified as an author, or when the person who has not contributed to research contents or results scientifically and technically, but has been designated as an author merely to express gratitude or courtesy.
⑤ Intentional acts to disturb a fraud investigation about themselves or others or the acts that can be harmful to informants.
⑥ Unfair evaluation regarding research of others or a disclosure or piracy of research ideas or results acquired during the evaluation process.
⑦ Severely aberrant acts that cannot be accepted in the scientific technology community.
The research integrity committee of KMB can commence an investigation to examine the veracity of research for the following situations:
① When an investigation is judged to be necessary after the items in article 3 are reported.
② When the possibility of misconduct is recognized by an editorial or academic board.
③ When the need for re-investigation is recognized due to the significant defect in the verdict of an investigation.
④ When there is a request for an investigation from other organizations.
① An informant refers to the person who informed about the misconduct or submitted the relevant evidence to the research integrity committee of KMB.
② Information should be submitted in writing with his/her real name mentioned in the documents, including the e-mail message. In the case of anonymous information submitted, when articles with clear titles including the contents and evidence of misconduct are submitted in detail, they will be dealt as if the information was submitted using the real name.
③ The personal information of an informant will not be disclosed.
④ The research integrity committee should respond to the enquiries from an informant about the investigation process and its schedule.
⑤ Informants who willfully submit false information will not be protected.
① The interviewee refers to the person who is being investigated for any accusation of misconduct or the person who is involved in the accusation, and any consultant or witness who is not included in this.
② The research integrity committee should not unfairly infringe the right or dignity of an interviewee during the investigation.
③ The accusation of misconduct must not be made public until the verdict is determined.
④ An interviewee can enquire about the investigation of the accusation of misconduct, its process, and the schedule of the investigation to the research integrity committee and the committee should respond to the enquiry.
The accusation of misconducts committed 5 years before the reporting date is to be dismissed for investigation.
The research integrity committee verifies the veracity of the accusation by processing preliminary investigation, actual investigation, and verdicts in order.
① A preliminary investigation refers to the process of determining whether an investigation regarding an accusation of misconduct is necessary, and it should be commenced within 30 days after it is reported to the research integrity committee.
② A verdict can be reached without commencing an actual investigation if an interviewee admits to committing misconducts during the preliminary investigation.
③ An informant can appeal to the research integrity committee within 30 days after being informed that an interviewee has been cleared of his/her misconduct charges.
① The actual investigation refers to the process of proving whether there has been any misconduct.
② The research integrity committee must offer opportunities for an informant and an interviewee to explain themselves. They should be offered the opportunities to appeal and defend themselves before the verdict of an investigation is determined, and it can be considered that they do not have any objections if they do not respond to the offer within the aforementioned period.
③ The contents or the defense of an informant and interviewee, as well as their outcomes must be included in the investigation report.
① Verdict confirms the outcome of an investigation and this should be provided to the informant and interviewee in writing.
② The whole process of an investigation after a preliminary investigation to the verdict must be completed within 6 months. However, the head of the research integrity committee should inform the head of KMB and extend the investigation period if there are any difficulties in investigation within this period.
③ An informant and interviewee can appeal within 30 days once they are informed about the verdict, and if they do not accept the verdict, the incident should be re-investigated if the contents of the appeal are rational and valid.
① All written records produced or collected by the Research Integrity Committee during a research misconduct investigation must be kept for at least 5 years.
② A report on the outcome of a research misconduct investigation will only be made public by the Research Integrity Committee after the verdict.
③ The public report (Article 12.2) will not contain a lists of witnesses, consultants or other third parties, if said party requests that they not be named.
① The head of the research integrity committee must inform the head of KMB about the contents and outcomes of an investigation and the verdict.
② The following must be included in the report of the actual investigation and its verdict:
1. The contents of information
2. The subjects of misconducts
3. The list of members for the investigation
4. The role of an interviewee and the presence of misconducts in a research
5. Relevant evidence and witnesses
6. The process outcomes for an informant and the appeals or defense from the opposite party
7. Disciplinary advisory for misconducts