Integrity Guidelines

ILSI North America Conflict of Interest Guiding Principles

The guiding principles were proposed in a recent article “Funding food science and nutrition research: financial conflicts and scientific integrity.” This paper was peer reviewed by a broad-based group of nearly 40 scientists from health-related fields, as well as by the editors and reviewers of these six scientific journals – Nutrition Reviews (NR), American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (AJCN), Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics formerly the American Dietetic Association (JADA), Journal of Food Science, Nutrition Today, and the Journal of Nutrition. The journals all published the paper, in full or in part, in April, May, and June, 2009.

The principles proposed in the paper provide guidance to researchers receiving funding from industry to help minimize the potential for bias due to funding source. The paper also was published to stimulate ongoing discussion of the conflict-of-interest issue because of the common desire of food and nutrition scientists and practitioners, journal editors, academics, government representatives and members of the relevant industries to protect the integrity of the scientific food and nutrition literature. A pdf of the full article in Nutrition Reviews is available on the ILSI NA website. Your comments and opinions are welcome.

In the conduct of public/private research relationships, all relevant parties shall:

  • conduct or sponsor research that is factual, transparent, and designed objectively; according to accepted principles of scientific inquiry, the research design will generate an appropriately phrased hypothesis and the research will answer the appropriate questions, rather than favor a particular outcome;
  • require control of both study design and research itself to remain with scientific investigators;
  • not offer or accept remuneration geared to the outcome of a research project;
  • prior to the commencement of studies, ensure that there is a written agreement that the investigative team has the freedom and obligation to attempt to publish the findings within some specified time-frame;
  • require, in publications and conference presentations, full signed disclosure of all financial interests;
  • not participate in undisclosed paid authorship arrangements in industry-sponsored publications or presentations;
  • guarantee accessibility to all data and control of statistical analysis by investigators and appropriate auditors/reviewers; and
  • require that academic researchers, when they work in contract research organizations (CRO) or act as contract researchers, make clear statements of their affiliation; require that such researchers publish only under the auspices of the CRO.

ENC abides by the ILSI North America Conflict of Interest Guiding Principles.

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