DINÂMIA’CET -Iscte, Centre for Socioeconomic and Territorial Studies is an Iscte Research Unit, evaluated with Very Good by FCT - the Portuguese national funding agency for science, research and technology. The Centre combines fundamental and applied research on economic, social and cultural topics. It carries out advanced international research systematically grounded on interdisciplinarity. With the aim of framing a new approach to sustainable development, our research seeks to contribute to the understanding of the contemporary world through the analysis of the contexts, the actors and the consequences of change, with a focus on institutional frameworks, and through extensive recourse to comparative approaches. Devoting special attention to the dynamics and changes of the Portuguese society, the researchers of DINÂMIA’CET-IUL are engaged in contributing to the design of the future, and, when considered appropriate (e.g. to promote environmental sustainability, social cohesion and democracy), do not hesitate to expressly endorse a normative approach.
Socioeconomic and territorial change, the focus of D'C's research, necessarily implies changes of social norms. In democratic societies, such changes should take place in a participative and reflexive way. In complex societies, such changes should result from plural efforts undertaken in different social domains. The recent institutionalization, in the scientific world, of ethical debates is part of these efforts.
Thus, in order to be in a position to properly deal with its main research topic - Socioeconomic and territorial change - D'C must be aware and engage itself in an ethical reflection of this kind. This is why, in line with recent trends in European science policy, in accordance with ISCTE-IUL strategy in these matters, and taking the opportunity of the 2017 FCT Research Units evaluation campaign, D'C is setting up measures with a view to improve the awareness of ethical issues among researchers and staff.
With a view to future debates involving D'C researchers and staff, as well as relevant experts in this domain, a Draft for a DINÂMIA'CET Ethics Charter has been issued and made available here. The principles it includes are derived mainly from the ISCTE-IUL Code of Academic Conduct (Ordinance 5835/2013) and Code of Ethical Conduct on Research (Despacho nº 86/2016), and from relevant European and international standards, specifically the 2005 European Charter for Researchers and the 2010 Singapore Statement on Research Integrity. The FCT Ethics Self-Assessment Guide 2017 has also been taken into account, even if D'C's socioeconomic and territorial research only partially entails ethical issues considered in that document.
DRAFT FOR A DINÂMIA'CET ETHICS CHARTER
The principles included in this document are selected in view of their particular relevance for the implementation of the D'C strategic plan 2019-2022, and categorized according to their connection to the researchers' status (I), to the researchers' practices (II), and to the relation of the Unit with society (III).
I - With respect to the researcher's status, D'C emphasis is on:
i) Equity and seriousness in procedures of staff recruitment, and of admission of members;
ii) Non-discrimination and gender balance;
iii) The researchers' freedoms of thought and expression, and their freedoms to design and implement their research and teaching
iv) The recognition of researchers' intellectual property rights;
v) Participation in decision-making processes;
vi) The implementation of rigorous and fair evaluation schemes.
II - With respect to the researchers' practices, D'C is committed to promote:
i) In all research operations addressing directly individual persons, the collection of their informed consent, and the defence of their dignity, rights, health, safety and privacy.
ii) In the relations to organizations concerned by the investigation, the observance of the same requirements of informed consent and of protection of privacy, as well as the protection of industrially and commercially sensitive data.
iii) The observance of the highest methodological standards when collecting and processing scientific data;
iv) The involvement, as far as possible, of people concerned by the research topic in the carrying out of the research, favouring their appropriation of research results;
v) Strict opposition to attempts from people outside the research team, namely the ones concerned by the result of the research, tointerfere in a way likely to deviate research conclusions from scientifically grounded conclusions, and report such attempts to the D'C Board of Directors.
vi) In evaluation and decision-making processes, the disclosure of conflicts of interest, and the adoption of steps required by such conflicts of interests.
III - With respect to the relation of D'C with society, D'C and its researchers should, in particular:
i) Be duly aware and act in conformity with the principle of the social responsibility of science;
ii) Pay attention to the general conditions required for the continuation of research activities, and be available, whenever necessary, to take action for the maintenance of such conditions;
iii) In the dissemination of research results, adopt measures likely to warrant access to them, not only to institutions and organized stakeholders, but also to individual citizens;
iv) Strictly observe measures of data protection and of confidentiality rules;
v) Contribute to the careful conservation of research data.
DINÂMIA'CET Task Force in charge with the FCT Evaluation Procedure, February 2018
Board of Directors
Pedro Costa, director
Ana Costa, subdirector
Pierre Guibentif, subdirector
Ana Rita Cruz
Maria Assunção Gato
Project Manager / Phd Support
Science Manager Officer
External Permanent Commission for Scientific Advice
Manuel Mira Godinho
José Madureira Pinto