Declaration of Scientific Integrity (DSI)

dilemma game

Doctoral regulations

All Erasmus University PhD candidates are subject to the Netherlands Code of Conduct for Academic Practice. In order to vow to comply with these principles PhD candidates are required to sign a declaration of scientific integrity. The Graduate School offers a full-day workshop Professionalism and integrity in research during which these general principles are not only explained, but also thoroughly explored and debated among the participants.

The first part of the workshop consists of two highly interactive lectures. These will cover the context of the principles, values and rules of scientific professionalism and integrity as they apply to the fields of the social sciences and the humanities research in general, and to our university in particular.

PhD candidates will also play the EUR Dilemma Game, which includes in-depth discussions in smaller groups on particular dilemmas. The day ends with a signing of the declaration of scientific integrity.

person signing paper

"The workshop really made me think about choices I will probably have to make during my PhD. It also made me enthusiastic about the importance of ethics, and the necessity to preserve academic integrity."

- Feedback PhD candidate
Professionalism and integrity in research

Integrity risks

PhD research

There are many kinds of risks for integrity in PhD research and trajectories. We summarise those under three headings:

  • Deception: means to ‘deceive’, to mislead. This can take various small or big forms but all come down to pretending your CV or your research or your writing or something else that is relevant to your PhD is better than it really is.
  • Plagiarism: means literally to use another person's words or ideas without giving credit to that person. It can also take the form of bad referencing or patch-working, i.e. cut pieces of different texts and collate them in a ‘patchy’ way.
  • Fabrication: refers to all cases in which you make something up, this could be a non-existing piece of literature, but in the recent past a number of senior academic researchers have been found out to fabricate their data and suggest they have done real research.

Deception, plagiarism and fabrication can occur in all phases of the PhD research. But they take different forms in each phase. Below is a list of possible risks for each phase.

Collegial behaviour

Professionalism and integrity in research

The way you interact with your fellow PhD candidates, your supervisors and the support staff of the university, is also an area where you can behave with more or less integrity. In general, treat others like you would like to be treated yourself, i.e. kind and supportive.

When a fellow PhD candidate or other colleague who is not part of your supervisory team helps you with a good idea or close reading of your text, make sure you acknowledge that in a footnote, or in the acknowledgement paragraph of your manuscript. Acknowledge also the role of your supervisor(s).

When in doubt about co-authorship or other issues with your supervisor, check the relevant guidelines and procedures established by the Graduate School.

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