What is Scientific Misconduct, Who Has to (Dis)Prove it, and to What Level of Certainty?

Medicine and Law, Vol. 26, p. 493, 2007

Arizona Legal Studies Discussion Paper No. 07-21

20 Pages Posted: 19 Sep 2007

See all articles by Roy G. Spece

Roy G. Spece

University of Arizona - James E. Rogers College of Law

Carol Bernstein

University of Arizona

Abstract

This article traces the regulation of Public Health Service ("PHS")-funded research from changes begun with the proposal (1999) and then adoption (2000) of a basic, Uniform Federal ("research misconduct") Policy. It argues that the PHS misconduct regulations deny due process of law and are fundamentally unfair because they fail to specify the level of culpability for guilt, force accused researchers to prove that they are innocent, and, although admittedly quasi-criminal, adopt a standard of proof that tolerates nearly a 50 percent probability of false convictions. The regulations' infirmities will be demonstrated by applying them to facts relating to the central charge in the misconduct case pressed by the University of Arizona in 1997 through 2003 against then Arizona Regents' Professor Marguerite Kay, which facts are set forth in our companion piece in this theme issue.

Keywords: scientific misconduct, burden of proof, standard of culpability, standard of proof, presumption of guilt, unconstitutionally vague

JEL Classification: K42

Suggested Citation

Spece, Roy G. and Bernstein, Carol, What is Scientific Misconduct, Who Has to (Dis)Prove it, and to What Level of Certainty?. Medicine and Law, Vol. 26, p. 493, 2007; Arizona Legal Studies Discussion Paper No. 07-21. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1015364

Roy G. Spece (Contact Author)

University of Arizona - James E. Rogers College of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 210176
Tucson, AZ 85721-0176
United States

Carol Bernstein

University of Arizona ( email )

Department of History
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States

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