The Research Ethics and Integrity Review Group (REIRG) was established by the Research Policy Group in autumn 2014 to ensure that research integrity and governance has a strong profile at Edinburgh and is firmly embedded in the University’s ethos and culture.
Research Ethics and Integrity Review Group
REIRG ensures compliance with the UUK Concordat to support research Integrity. Being able to demonstrate compliance is essential as the four national HIgher Education Funding Bodies, Research Councils UK, UUK, the National Institute for Health Research and Wellcome Trust are all signatories. REIRG is also expected to monitor University level information on all aspects of integrity and ethics so that it is are visible and up to date and, via its College representatives, check this is also true at College and School level.
REIRG ensures the University nominates key individuals for handling issues of research misconduct as required under the terms of the UUK concordat and is establishing a virtual community of individuals involved with promoting good research good practice. Through the Insitute of Academic Development, REIRG promotes awareness and training in integrity and ethics. REIRG is the University’s point of contact with the the UK Research Integrity Office.
Via its regular reports to Research Policy Group, REIRG ensures compliance with internal and external ethics and Integrity reporting requirements. The Colleges' annual Research Ethics and Integrity reports are scrutinised by REIRG before being referred to RPG for approval. In similar fashion, the University's Annual Research Ethics and Integrity report is prepared by REIRG for consideration by RPG, which approves the Annual report and refers it to the University's Risk Management Group for final approval. Risk Management Committee is a thematic Committee of University Court. This arrangement satisfies the expectations set out in the UUK Concordat to support research.
The first University's Research Ethics and Integrity report which covered the academic year 2014-15 was approved by Risk Management Committee in November 2016.
Annual reports will focus on exanples of good practice and other developments since the last reporting period as summarising College level statistics on research ethics approval processes so we are comply with the spirit of the five commitments set out in the Universities UK Concordat to support research integrity. College or University level changes to research ethics and Integrity governance arrangements will be included in the next annual update. Every five years the University will publish a fully revised Research Ethics and Integrity report include information on its ethics and integrity governance process which operates at University, College and School level.
Membership and Terms of Reference
REIRG is chaired by the Head of the Research Support Office. Its membership includes of two senior members of academic staff, the three College Research Officers, the University Records Manager, and the secretary to Research Policy Group who is a member of Governance and Strategic Planning.
To ensure that REIRG operations are in alignment with the legisation that applies to Health and Health-related research and research involving animals, REIRG membership also includes staff who provide information, advice and guidance to staff carrying out research in these areas.
Research Governance Office - provides information, advice and guidance about Health and Health Related research and ensures we meet the highest ethical standards relating to this areas of research
Central Bioresearch Services - provides information, advice and guidance relating to research involving animals as well as being responsible for the day to day management of the University's facilities ensuring we adhere to the highest standards of animal welfare
To facilitate the promotion of awareness and training in integrity and ethics across the University's diverse academic communities, the Head of Researcher Development & Assistant Director at University's Institute for Academic Development is a member of REIRG, especially among those at the start of their academic careers.
The Terms of Reference for REIRG are regularly reviewed