Procedural Justice, Identity, & Research Integrity

From CRISP: “This study is an analysis of the relationships between scientists’ perceptions of procedural justice and their behaviors, both positive and negative, related to the integrity of their research. We will examine these relationships between the context of scientists’ work and their behavior at 3 different levels: the academic department, the institution, and the task environment which encompasses the web of external agents (funding agencies, regulatory bodies, disciplinary organizations, etc.) that relate directly to scientists’ research. Procedural justice here refers to individual’s perceptions about the fairness of decision-making in organizations, particularly in the procedures that determine the distribution of resources. We hypothesize that when scientists perceive violations of procedural justice, that is, believe that decision-making about resources that affect themselves and their work is unfair; they will exhibit negative “corrective responses” such as misbehavior in research or other conduct that runs counter to normative expectations in science. On the other hand, when scientists perceive procedural justice, they will be more likely to behave in accordance with the highest standards of research integrity. ”

I’ll be very interested to track down the findings of this R01 award to the HealthPartners Research Foundation. Considering how “unfair” many currently perceive peer review & funding decisions at the NIH … and that not all research institutions distribute research resources according to an objective and transparent formula … these data could be timely and enlightening.

Update: Some data have been published in the Sept 2007 issue of Academic Medicine.


  1. drugmonkey said

    gotta love writedit, good find. I guess there’s no point in Dr. Free-Ride writing a grant after all.

    the PI of this one has a recent paper or two on the topic in the PubMed public repository, for those who are interested.

    PI also had a nice commentary in Nature in 2005 and has 4 more upcoming publications related to this work, including one that sounds superb slated for publication in a special edition of Academic Medicine in Sept 2007.-writedit

  2. […] funding woes at US biomedical institutions by one of my favorite research integrity researchers, Brian Martinson. Indeed, as part of this commentary, he notes that “Difficult funding decisions are […]

  3. […] September 12th, 2007 There is a recent commentary in Nature from Brian C. Martinson, one of those chaps funded to study the enterprise of science. Recent pubs from this author/group on ethical conduct in science are here, here and here. [Update: See a prior note on this work from writedit.] […]

  4. […] here, and especially relevant here) and on Medical Writing, Editing and Grantsmanship (here, here, here). Click the relevant post categories on each site because they each have plenty more on the topic. […]

  5. […] (including projects that are components of P mechanism awards, U54s, and the like). As I’ve noted previously, Brian Martinson et al. suggest this would be a welcome shift from the perspective of procedural […]

  6. […] such a mechanism in place and transparent criteria for evaluating requests and distributing funds (distributive & procedural justice). These institutions gladly take the indirect costs their investigators bring in (70% at Dana […]

  7. […] a fan of work on procedural and distributive justice by Brian Martinson, Melissa Anderson, et al., I was particularly pleased to see the accompanying […]

  8. […] visitors will know that I monitor studies and analyses of procedural and distributive justice in the context of the research environment, such as the work of Brian Martinson, Melissa Anderson, […]

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