Reported inaccuracies about the UK Research Integrity OfficeBMJ 2012; 344 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.e547 (Published 24 January 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e547
- James Parry, chief executive1
We welcome the BMJ’s focus on research misconduct, but this article contains serious errors about the UK Research Integrity Office (UKRIO).1
UKRIO is not “hosted by the University of Sussex.” Since December 2010 we have leased premises at the Sussex Innovation Centre on the university’s campus, but we remain an independent organisation.2 Although the university is one of many institutions that has supported UKRIO since our move to a wider pool of funders in 2011, we have no other affiliation with it. It is regrettable that your article stated, incorrectly, to the contrary.
We are baffled by the claim that UKRIO “exists in a vestigial form.” Neither our relocation or transition to a limited company caused any break in the continuity of UKRIO’s services.1
Had we been contacted before publication, and I am puzzled that we were not, we could have explained that we still provide independent and confidential support on issues of research integrity, responding to more than 60 cases in the past year.
It is not surprising that a confidential service generates little publicity, but this has not prevented use of our services. Researchers, the public, and those who deal with research integrity on behalf of organisations value our guidance, as shown by the continuing rise in the use of our services. We would not be asked for help if we were not needed.
Inaccurate statements about our operations or affiliations can cause confusion and distress to the whistleblowers and others who use UKRIO’s services.
Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e547
Competing interests: JP is chief executive of the UK Research Integrity Office (UKRIO). The University of Sussex is one of the many organisations that has chosen to support UKRIO since our move to a wider pool of funders in 2010. JP has delivered training on research integrity at the University of Sussex.