Statement of Conduct
The American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB) is dedicated to development of plant science and plant scientists. This entails encouraging publication of original research about plants. The Society is committed to promoting integrity in both scientific research and education and expects its members to maintain high ethical standards for scholarship and professional conduct.
The ASPB recognizes that ethics differ significantly from cultural or personal values and belief systems. This statement addresses only ethical behavior pertaining to conducting research and educating the public about science. The ASPB also recognizes that science is an evolving body of knowledge subject to various interpretations. "High ethical standards" entail a willingness to consider fairly all interpretations of data, validity and limitations of methods, as well as fair recognition of all stakeholders in the conduct of science.
The following statements of conduct begin with the responsibilities of the individual in their own endeavors and move toward progressively wider spheres of responsibility. The ASPB also encourages members to avail themselves of the local ethics structure regarding research and teaching in their workplace and community as well as that of the ASPB.
- In their own scientific interactions, ASPB members shall uphold the highest standards of integrity in conducting and objectively evaluating research and education in both oral and written exchanges, including peer-review in any format (manuscripts, proposals, evaluations of students and peers for promotion or jobs, etc).
- As mentors in their own institutions and workplaces, ASPB members shall provide training, promote professional development, and instill an understanding of ethical responsibility in students of all educational levels (see ASPB Bioethics Imperative http://www.aspb.org/editorials/bioethics.cfm).
- Within the scientific community, ASPB members shall demonstrate professional conduct in communicating scientific information pertaining to research and/or education in an open and timely manner
- To the public at large, ASPB members shall ensure that their comments on scientific matters are based on the fundamental principles of credible science to avoid disseminating unsubstantiated, premature, exaggerated or misleading information. http://www.aspb.org/publicaffairs/
"Advisor, Teacher, Role Model, Friend" National Academy of Sciences Press. (http://books.nap.edu/books/0309063639/html/index.html). Deals with the relationship between PIs and their students/postdocs.
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"Integrity in Scientific Research: Creating an Environment That Promotes Responsible Conduct" National Academy of Sciences Press. (http://www.nap.edu/books/0309084792/html/).
Bioethics Imperative Columns from ASPB News
Plant Physiology articles on Agricultural ethics
USDA Code of Scientific Ethics
On-Line Science Ethics Resources from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
The ASPB Executive Committee, 2003