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Research Ethics

The honor in being elected to Sigma Xi is inextricably coupled
with responsibility, to use the knowledge that you have to better
the lot of humanity. And this is the hallmark of Sigma Xi in the 21st Century.

- Thomas F. Malone, Sigma Xi President 1988-1989
Former Foreign Secretary, National Academy of Sciences

Excerpted from the documentary "Sigma Xi: Making a Difference in Science and Engineering." Hear about Sigma Xi's championing of ethics in research science and engineering. (0:57) PC users    Mac users

Since its founding in 1886, Sigma Xi has emphasized that integrity is vital to science. But for busy researchers, ethical practices are often taken for granted until something bad happens—perhaps a resignation, a retraction or an authorship dispute.

As an honor society, Sigma Xi aims to foster the highest professionalism among its members. This means cultivating a keen awareness of ethical issues and a proactive approach to research integrity as it applies to each stage of the research process, such as:

  • Recordkeeping
  • Avoiding conflicts of interest
  • Sharing authorship
  • Conducting peer review
  • Securing tenure and career advancement
  • Talking with the media

When scientists uphold ethical best practices in these and other areas, they contribute to an accurate scientific record, public trust in science, and efficient use of research funds.

Sigma Xi is here to help researchers, both young and established, think about these issues and to set a good example for their colleagues. To find out more, please visit the following links.

Sigma Xi Ethics Publications

Events & Programs

Other Resources


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