Faculty of Medicine Committee: Research Integrity
Professor Emerita Ruth Shalgi
Professor Dafna Yahav
Professor Issachar Rosen-Zvi
Professor Udi Qimron
Professor Emeritus Leonard Leibovici (Chair)
Committee Assistant: Ms. Eynat Sofer
The Faculty of Medicine adopts research integrity as one of its principles. The Faculty adopts Tel Aviv University’s “Regulations on Proper Conduct in Research” (https://www.tau.ac.il/sites/default/files/media_server/General/yoets/10-025.pdf). Harm to research integrity is even more serious in the case of bio-medical research, where improper management or reporting of research is liable to harm patients as well as healthy individuals.
The Committee’s mandate extends to all persons engaged in research within the Faculty: academic staff, visiting lecturers and professors, students, post-doctoral students, administrative staff engaged in research, and volunteers (hereinafter “Faculty Investigator”).
Reporting to the Committee
The following topics may be reported to the Committee:
• Conducting research on humans or animals in the absence of appropriate approval from the ethics committee.
• Conducting research contrary to the ethics committee’s approval.
• Falsifying or misrepresenting details in a curriculum vitae.
• Falsifying or altering research results: data, photographs or graphs for the purpose of deception.
• Failure to take steps to bring to the public’s attention that falsified or inaccurate research results were published.
• Intentional destruction of research records before the prescribed time set forth in the University’s regulations and under law.
• Failure to maintain the original research documentation, to the extent of prejudicing the ability to understand whether the research was carried out and what were its results.
• Copying (in a publication or thesis) from another source, without citing the source and without clearly indicating the fact that it was copied.
• Duplicate publication of articles or results.
• Prejudicial publication of the investigators and authors of the publication: failure to include an author who should have been included in the list of authors on account of his/her contribution; including an author who made no contribution to the research work; a professional author wrote the article or a significant part thereof, yet such contribution was not noted.
• Failure to publish research where the data thereof should appropriately be published.
• Failure to properly disclose a conflict of interest.
• Using ideas or methods that were conveyed under confidentiality (for example: a review of a publication or a grant proposal).
• Misuse of authority in order to force a student or a colleague to harm the integrity of the research, or not report such harm.
• Falsifying data or a misrepresentation in an application for a research grant.
• Misuse of research grant funds, used not for the purpose of the research or not in accordance with the terms of the research foundation.
Contacting the Committee
Anyone who identifies harm to the research integrity done by a Faculty Investigator may contact the Committee: including students, academic and administrative staff of Tel Aviv University; employees of the hospitals that are affiliated with the Faculty; and personnel in foundations that award grants or scientific journals.
The Committee will also accept anonymous reporting. For obvious reasons it is possible that the handling of anonymous reporting may be different from reports where it is possible to discuss with the reporting party.
Well-reasoned reports in writing may be addressed to the Committee Assistant, Ms. Eynat Sofer: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We also encourage informal consultation with the following Committee members: Prof. Ruth Shalgi: email@example.com and Prof. Leonard Leibovici: firstname.lastname@example.org. Any further handling of such reporting shall be discussed between the reporting party and the Committee member. A summary of the reported matter shall be brought before all the Committee members while maintaining the reporting party's anonymity and any other identifying detail.
The handling of the report
The Committee Chair will review the reports with the Committee Assistant. The Chair has the authority to decide as follows:
(1) The Committee does not have the authority to hear the report and assigns the matter to the appropriate authority (on the presumption that such authority exists);
(2) The Committee has the authority to hear the report, however the investigation can only be carried out by another entity (for example – an affiliated hospital), and will then contact the other entity and request an investigation into the details thereof;
(3) The report will be heard before the Committee (without any further or later investigation) and the Committee will contact the subject of the report (the Investigator who allegedly prejudiced the research integrity) and seek their response.
(4) The report is groundless. Such report will be brought to the Committee's attention and for its decision.
In a hearing held before the Committee, the Committee may ask the reporting party to appear before it. The Committee will ask the subject of the report (the Investigator who allegedly prejudiced the research integrity) to appear before it.
The Committee will ask the University’s academic staff and employees to appear before them if needed for investigating the report, as well as persons outside the University where necessary.
The Committee has several possibilities for deciding how to handle a report:
• Where the Committee decided that the report is groundless it shall inform as such in writing the reporting party, the Investigator who was the subject of the report, the Dean of the Faculty, as well as any other person involved in the investigation into the report. Documentation of the report, the investigation carried out and the Committee's decision shall be maintained in the Committee's documents.
• The Committee may decide upon a correction: impose upon the Investigator that they correct the published record; or complete that which requires completion; or withdraw the article that was published. Likewise, it may ask the Investigator to inform all concerned parties of the steps that were taken.
• The Committee may recommend to the Dean to write a letter to the Investigator detailing the Committee's findings, and file said letter in the Investigator's personal file used for promotion, recommendation letters or decisions on tenure. The Dean will decide whether a copy of the letter will be sent to the Rector and/or the Vice President for Research.
• The Committee may recommend to the Dean to disseminate its findings to the Faculty’s academic staff while concealing the Investigator’s name and other identifying details.
• The Committee may refer its findings to the University disciplinary committee or the disciplinary tribunal, as the case may be.
Dec. 24, 2022