Commentary | Published:

Scientists behaving badly

Nature volume 435, pages 737738 (09 June 2005) | Download Citation


To protect the integrity of science, we must look beyond falsification, fabrication and plagiarism, to a wider range of questionable research practices, argue Brian C. Martinson, Melissa S. Anderson and Raymond de Vries.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1.

    OSTP Federal Policy on Research Misconduct (2005).

  2. 2.

    Nature 420, 739–740 (2002).

  3. 3.

    Nature 420, 739 (2002).

  4. 4.

    , , , & Science 294, 2293–2294 (2001).

  5. 5.

    Panel on Scientific Responsibility and the Conduct of Research (Natl Acad., Washington DC, 1992).

  6. 6.

    ORI Introduction to the Responsible Conduct of Research (US Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 2004).

  7. 7.

    , & Am. Sci. 81, 542–553 (1993).

  8. 8.

    et al. Control Clin. Trials 21, 415–427 (2000).

  9. 9.

    Med. Ethics 27, 344–346 (2001).

  10. 10.

    , & J. Clin Epidemiol. 50, 1129–1136 (1997).

  11. 11.

    Committee on Science Engineering and Public Policy On Being a Scientist: Responsible Conduct in Research (Natl Acad., Washington DC, 1995).

  12. 12.

    Panel on Scientific Responsibility and the Conduct of Research (Natl Acad., Washington DC, 1993).

  13. 13.

    Institute of Medicine and National Research Council Committee on Assessing Integrity in Research Environments Integrity in Scientific Research: Creating an Environment that Promotes Responsible Conduct (Natl Acad., Washington DC, 2002).

Download references


This research was supported by the Research on Research Integrity Program, an ORI/NIH collaboration, with financial support from the National Institute of Nursing Research and an NIH Mentored Research Scientist Award to R.d.V. We thank the three anonymous reviewers, Nick N. Steneck and M. Sheetz for their insightful input and responses to earlier drafts.

Author information


  1. Brian C. Martinson is at the HealthPartners Research Foundation, 8100 34th Avenue South, PO Box 1524, Mailstop 21111R, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55440-1524, USA.

    • Brian C. Martinson
  2. Melissa S. Anderson is at the University of Minnesota, Educational Policy and Administration, 330 Wulling Hall, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA.

    • Melissa S. Anderson
  3. Raymond de Vries is at the University of Minnesota, Center for Bioethics, N504 Boynton, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA.

    • Raymond de Vries


  1. Search for Brian C. Martinson in:

  2. Search for Melissa S. Anderson in:

  3. Search for Raymond de Vries in:

About this article

Publication history



Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.

Newsletter Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing