UK Committee on Research Integrity
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The UK Committee on Research Integrity aims to promote and strengthen research integrity. To inform their annual reporting efforts, and building on our previous work in this area, we were commissioned to develop a corpus of evidence to both enhance understanding on the state of research integrity in the UK and act as a benchmark from which trends can be monitored.
To achieve this, we identified and analysed annual research integrity statements produced by UK higher education institutions that received UK Research and Innovation funding between the financial years 2019/20 and 2021/22. Our final analysis included 283 statements by 117 institutions. We analysed the annual statements using NVivo, to tag text mapped to areas in the latest research integrity annual reporting template. Quantitative data regarding the content of annual statements and misconduct figures was also captured to complement the qualitative text extracts.
Our analysis provided evidence that higher education institutions consider research integrity as a strategic priority and are increasing efforts in this area. However, we also found that activities to support research integrity are highly diverse and dependent on the institutional context and resources.
Overall, the evidence we examined indicates a positive outlook on the state of research integrity in the UK and suggests that reviewing annual statements is a valuable way for the Committee to maintain an understanding of the direction of travel of UK higher education institutions.