What is a breach

As an institution that receives Agency funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), the University of Waterloo follows the 2021 Tri-Agency Framework: Responsible Conduct of Research. These principles are embodied in Article 14 of the UW/FAUW Memorandum of Agreement for those represented by FAUW, as well as the Integrity in Research Administrative Guidelines for those staff, students, postdoctoral fellows, and others not represented by FAUW.

Misconduct in research may include, but is not limited to, one or more of the following:

  1. Fabrication: Making up data, source material, methodologies or findings, including graphs and images.
  2. Falsification: Manipulating, changing, or omitting data, source material, methodologies or findings, including graphs and images, without appropriate acknowledgement, such that the research record is not accurately represented
  3. Destruction of research data or records: The destruction of one’s own or another’s research data or records or in contravention of the applicable funding agreement, institutional policy and/or laws, regulations and professional or disciplinary standards. This also includes the destruction of data or records to avoid the detection of wrongdoing.
  4. Plagiarism: Presenting and using another’s published or unpublished work, including theories, concepts, data, source material, methodologies or findings, including graphs and images, as one’s own, without appropriate referencing and, if required, without permission.
  5. Redundant publications: The re-publication of one’s own previously published work or part thereof, or data, in the same or another language, without adequate acknowledgment of the source, or justification.
  6. Invalid authorship: Inaccurate attribution of authorship, including attribution of authorship to persons other than those who have contributed sufficiently to take responsibility for the intellectual content, or agreeing to be listed as author to a publication for which one made little or no material contribution.
  7. Inadequate acknowledgement: Failure to appropriately recognize contributions of others in a manner consistent with their respective contributions and authorship policies of relevant publications.
  8. Mismanagement of Conflict of Interest: Failure to appropriately manage any real, potential or perceived conflict of interest, in accordance with the Institution’s policy on conflict of interest in research, preventing one or more of the objectives set out in 14.1.2 from being met.
  9. Providing incomplete, inaccurate or false information in a grant or award application or related document, such as a letter of support or a progress report.
  10. Applying for and/or holding an Agency award when deemed ineligible by NSERC, SSHRC, CIHR or any other research or research funding organization world-wide for reasons of breach of responsible conduct of research policies such as ethics, integrity or financial management policies.
  11. Listing of co-applicants, collaborators or partners without their agreement.
  12. Using grant or award funds for purposes inconsistent with the policies of the funding agency; misappropriating grants and award funds; contravening financial policies of the funding agency or University; or providing incomplete, inaccurate or false information on documentation for expenditures from grant or award accounts.
  13. Failing to meet Agency policy requirements or, to comply with relevant policies, laws or regulations, for the conduct of certain types of research activities; failing to obtain appropriate approvals, permits or certifications before conducting these activities.
  14. Failing to comply with Policy 69, Conflict of Interest: a researcher failing to reveal to the University any significant financial interest he/she has in a company that contracts with the University to undertake research (particularly research involving the company's products or those of its direct competitors) or to provide research-related materials or services. Significant financial interest includes ownership, substantial stock holding, a directorship, significant honoraria or consulting fees but does not include routine stock holding in a large publicly traded company.
  15. Failing to obtain the permission of the author before making significant use in any publication of new information, concepts or data obtained through access to manuscripts or grant applications during the peer review process.

If you believe a breach of the above has occurred, please report a breach.

Informal inquiries and questions can be confidentially directed to Ian Milligan, Associate Vice-President, Research Oversight and Analysis, 519-888-4567, ext. 42775.