Publication
Title
The value-free ideal in codes of conduct for research integrity
Author
Abstract
While the debate on values in science focuses on normative questions on the level of the individual (e.g. should researchers try to make their work as value free as possible?), comparatively little attention has been paid to the institutional and professional norms that researchers are expected to follow. To address this knowledge gap, we conduct a content analysis of leading national codes of conduct for research integrity of European countries, and structure our analysis around the question: do these documents allow for researchers to be influenced by "non-epistemic" (moral, cultural, commercial, political, etc.) values or do they prohibit such influence in compliance with the value-free ideal (VFI) of science? Our results return a complex picture. On the one hand, codes of conduct consider many non-epistemic values to be a legitimate influence on the decision-making of researchers. On the other, most of these documents include what we call VFI-like positions: passages claiming that researchers should be free and independent from any external influence. This shows that while many research integrity documents do not fully endorse the VFI, they do not reject it and continue to be implicitly influenced by it. This results in internal tensions and underdetermined guidance on non-epistemic values that may limit some of the uses of research integrity codes, especially for purposes of ethical self-regulation. While codes of conduct cannot be expected to decide how researchers should act in every instance, we do suggest that they acknowledge the challenges of how to integrate non-epistemic values in research in a more explicit fashion.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Synthese : an international journal for epistemology, methodology and philosophy of science. - Dordrecht, 1936, currens
Publication
Dordrecht : 2023
ISSN
0039-7857 [print]
1573-0964 [online]
DOI
10.1007/S11229-023-04377-Y
Volume/pages
202 :5 (2023) , p. 1-23
Article Reference
133
ISI
001087595800001
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (publisher's version - intranet only)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identifier
Creation 04.12.2023
Last edited 08.12.2023
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