New Code of Conduct

(April 4th, 2017) In late March, the European Commission received the new European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity from Europe's national academies of sciences and humanities.

According to the European Code of Conduct, good research practices are based on fundamental principles of research integrity. They guide researchers in their work as well as in their engagement with the practical, ethical and intellectual challenges inherent in research. The Code of Conduct defines these principles as reliability, honesty, respect and accountability.

The new code is truly European. It was drafted following wide consultation with key EU stakeholders from the academic and private research performers, NGOs and Young researchers associations. The new code is shorter and more focussed than the previous code, clearly underlining the main areas of concern and responsibilities for researchers and funders. In line with the 2015 Council Conclusions on research integrity, it emphasises, in particular, the responsibilities of research organisations to put in place the necessary procedures to prevent, detect and handle research misconduct. In addition, the Code is a living document that will be revisited, if necessary, to take account of changes in the research environment and the European legal framework (for example the implementation of the new EU regulation on the processing of personal data which
will apply from May 2018).

“Research integrity is a prerequisite for achieving excellence and building trust in research. The Code offers a common understanding on the ethical and practical challenges inherent to research in Europe and globally. Through the revision process, the Code helps researchers to navigate the changing and increasingly complex research environment they are facing today and in days to come. At the same time it reveals to the general public how researchers reflect on their work and what principles they follow,” said Günter Stock, lead author of the Code's drafting group.

The Commission will support the take-up of the Code at national level and, at European level, will implement it as the required standard of research integrity for projects funded by Horizon 2020, the EU's research and innovation funding programme. Horizon 2020 will also finance projects that will help implement the Code and to help develop a genuine EU research integrity community and culture through networking, training, education and the exchange and development of good practice.

Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation Carlos Moedas said: "The Commission's recent White Paper on the Future of Europe shows that we need knowledge and innovation to respond to global challenges and to address the needs of people in the European Union. The public needs full trust in science, and this can only be achieved if the highest level of research ethics and integrity are guaranteed. This goes hand in hand with our Open Science agenda to ensure open access to scientific publications and data. I warmly thank ALLEA and its member academies for producing this new Code of Conduct for Research Integrity. I am sure it will serve as a model for organisations and researchers across Europe."

Adapted from:,


Last Changes: 04.27.2017