Flemish Commission for Research Integrity (VCWI)

Founding year

2013

History

The five Flemish universities, the Academies for Sciences and for Medecine and the two main funding agencies took the joint initiative in 2013 to establish a national commission for research integrity. This Flemish Commission on Research Integrity can give a second advice about complaint files on research integrity, already handled by the research institution. Its secretariat is situated within the national Academy for Sciences. Almost all research instituties, among which all universities, recognize the commission.

ENRIO member since

2014

Structure

Voluntary based, not part of ministry

Main Tasks

The Flemish Commission on Research Integrity (Vlaamse Commissie voor Wetenschappelijke Integriteit = VCWI)
1. gives a second advice on allegations of breaches of research integrity
2. can issue general advice on research integrity
3. yearly gathers all research integrity professionals to network

Investigation

The VCWI can give a second advice on cases (complaint files), that have already been investigated by the research institutions itself. The commission on research integrity of a research institution communicates its findings in an advice to the board of the institution, answering the questions whether there is a breach in research integrity or not. When the accused person, the person who reported the alleged breach or the institution itself would like a “second opinion” on this question, this “request for a second advice” can be directed to the national commission VCWI. It communicates its second advice to these three involved parties (accused, reporter, institution).

The VCWI invites these three parties to be heard. It can ask the advice of experts and witnesses. It has strict rules on confidentiality and conflicts of interest.

The commission consists of 9 members (professors of Flemish universities) and has a secretary and legal advisor. It is governed by a special supervisory committee, representing all universities, the funding agency and the academies.

Chart Workflow of investigation VCWI

Promoting Research Integrity

The VCWI can publish general advice about research integrity matters, both when asked and on its own initiative. Institutions can for example ask an evaluation of their own research integrity policies. In this way, it plays a role in harmonizing the Flemish research integrity landscape.

Other tasks: "RI meeting day"

Once every year, the VCWI organises an “RI meeting day”, for all RI professionals in Flanders. The universities and other research instutions explain their policy and procedures and learn from each other. It is a networking and disussing day for all people professionally involved into research integrity, such as the chairs and secretaries of commissions on research integrity of all research institutions (among which the universities) and scientific directors and policy makers. This meeting is on invitation only, but all slideshows of presentation texts are available online.

Contact

Prof. em. André Van Steirteghem

Chair of Flemish Commission for Research Integrity

Vlaamse Commissie voor Wetenschappelijke Integriteit
Paleis der Academiën
Hertogsstraat 1
1000 Brussels - Belgium

Bert Seghers

Secretary of Flemish Commission for Research Integrity

Vlaamse Commissie voor Wetenschappelijke Integriteit
Paleis der Academiën
Hertogsstraat 1
1000 Brussels - Belgium

+32 (0)2 550 23 31

Conseil Superieur De L’integrite Scientifique - Communaute Francaise De Belgique (CSIS)

Founding year

2020

History

President:
Professeur Danielle BALERIAUX

Administration:
Mrs Nyongani KABUEMA

EVALUATION COMMITTEE

Sciences exactes et appliqués :

Monsieur Yves Caudano (UNamur)
Madame Marjorie Olivier (UMons)
Monsieur Yves Geerts (ULB)

Sciences biomédicales :
Monsieur Pierre Maquet (ULiège)
Monsieur Emile Van Schaftingen (ULouvain)
Monsieur Jean-Paul Sculier (ULB)

Sciences humaines et sociales :
Madame Christine Servais (ULiège)
Monsieur Bernard Harmegnies (UMons)
Madame Evelyne Léonard (UCL)
Juridique Madame Christine Guillain (Saint-Louis)

SUPERVISION COMMITTEE
Professeur Didier Viviers, Secrétaire Perpétuel Académie royale de Belgique
Professeur Fabrice BUREAU (ULiège; GIGA – University of Liege):  Professeur Caine MICHIELS (Unamur)
Professeur Jean-Christophe Renauld (ULouvain)
Jean- Marius Gilbert (ULB)
Ruddy Wattiez (UMons)
Professeur Olivier Paye: (Saint-Louis)

Mr Arnaud Goolaerts (FNRS- National research Foundation)

ENRIO member since

2020

Structure

Voluntary based; endorsed by all universities, and National Research Foundation and the Ministry of Education and Research

Main Tasks

  • To enforce the rules of scientific Integrity
  • To describe these rules (mainly ALLEA 2017) and to have all universities and public research institutions enforcing these rules approved by their respective boards. They are now part of all research fundings conventions and are enforced by the commitment of all public research institutions of the Communauté Française de Belgique to have these rules in effect.
  • The National Research foundation (FNRS) has approved the rules and bylaws of the CSIS and enforces their application in all research institutions receiving funding.
  • Investigation at a second level

Investigation

In a case of suspicion of alleged misconduct and brake of research integrity rules, the local universities must in a first instance investigate the case, decide of the outcome and establish ventually punishments.

The CSIS will instruct cases at a second level, at the request of the defendant or the University or the accusatory. The investigation committee is composed of 9 scientists in different fields of
activity . It gives its conclusion to the referring institution confidentially. The University and the National Research foundation may then attribute sanctions.

Training

In development.

Promoting Research Integrity

In development via the website under elaboration.

Contact

Professeur Danielle Baleriaux

President

Mrs Nyongani Kabuema

Administration