Portugal issues an official statement on Integrity on Scientific Research

Portugal issues an official statement on Integrity on Scientific Research

by Joana Araújo, Cintia Águas and Ana Sofia Carvalho

The National Council of Ethics for Life Sciences (CNECV), faced with the lack of a substantial framework on research integrity in Portugal, which may undermine the credibility of national science, and attentive to international developments, especially the recent publication of the revised edition of ALLEA’s “The European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity”, has considered it to be of the utmost relevance to issue a statement on the matter of research integrity.

With the remarkable progress of national scientists’ qualifications and productivity, and the increase of their participation in international projects, the establishment of clearly defined rules of conduct regarding the issues of research integrity was considered urgent by the CNECV.

By emphasizing the need to promote a sound and ethically robust research integrity policy in the National Science and Technology System, this reflection aimed, albeit in a synthetic manner, to draw attention to this issue of growing concern, both by proposing a conceptual framework and by promoting the discussion at Parliamentary level.

This initiative should be seen as the starting point for other official entities, such as the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology, and higher education research institutions and private entities, as well as funding agencies, to address this issue in a serious, fundamental and transparent way, thus reinforcing the ethical codes of conduct already in place in several academic institutions.

The CNECV’s Statement on Integrity on Scientific Research can be accessed and downloaded http://www.cnecv.pt/admin/files/data/docs/1523888172_IntegridadeCNECV2018.pdf.


About the CNECV: Portugal was one of the first European countries to feel the need for a bioethics committee at national level, having founded the CNECV in 1990. The Council, which functions adjunct to the Portuguese Parliament since 2009, is an independent consulting body whose mission is to analyze the ethical issues raised by scientific progress in the fields of biology, medicine or health in general and in the life sciences. The CNECV is, deliberately, a body without mandatory power. Its authority depends on how its pronouncements impact the opinion of decision-makers and the general public.