In this blog I explore Scholarly Integrity. I looked at the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) of the US Department of Health & Human Services and the code of ethics of the professional association for engineers in Puerto Rico, the Professional College of Engineers and Land Surveyors of Puerto Rico (CIAPR in Spanish.)
When reading the code of ethics of the CIAPR in its first article it mentions that its goal is “To maintain as the primary consideration in the performance of their professional responsibilities, the safety, environment, health and well-being of the community”. The community is front and center, for this, they have to look for their safety in the designs and constructions they perform. They also have to look to improve the environment in a sustainable way to improve the quality of life and health of the citizens. Another article that called my attention was the third one: “To issue public statements in an objective and truthful manner.” At all times that they express themselves in technical reports, statements, or testimonies, they have to do it with full knowledge of the topic, based in factual information in a serious and measured tone.
While exploring the website of the ORI, I found the case of Matthew Poore a former technician at Liquid Logic Inc. He falsified data in a presentation and report. He changed the outcomes of HIV tests, manipulating graphs and testing samples. He entered into a voluntary settlement and will have for a period of three years to (1) have his research supervised and (2) to exclude himself from serving in any advisory capacity to the US Public Health Service.
I had a chemistry teacher in an undergraduate course that always said: “there is nothing under the sun that is not known sooner than later.” I find this to be extremely true. It is very tempting to take quick routes and inflate or exaggerate ones accomplishments. There are severe consequences when one does not follow the rules of their professional practices to live in a better society.
CIAPR (2015). “Manual of Practice and Guidelines for the Compensation of Professional Services.”, <http://www.ciapr.org/ciapr.org/share/ManualGuidaDeCompensacionSec.pdf> (May. 1, 2015).
ORI (2013). “Case Summary: Poore, Matthew.”, <http://ori.hhs.gov/content/case-summary-poore-matthew> (May. 1, 2015).