Research Integrity outside the FWO

Because vigilance is also required in Flanders, the FWO took the initiative to establish a Vlaamse Commissie voor Wetenschappelijke Integriteit (Flemish Committee for Scientific Integrity, VCWI) in 2011.  It was established on 9 October 2013 and is located in the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts (KVAB), which provides the secretariat there. The organisations that together decided to establish the VCWI are:

  • Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts (KVAB)
  • Royal Academy for Medicine of Belgium (KAGB)
  • Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
  • Agency for Innovation by Science and Technology (IWT)
  • KU Leuven
  • Universiteit Antwerpen
  • Universiteit Gent
  • Universiteit Hasselt
  • Vrije Universiteit Brussel

These institutions have approved the regulations of the VCWI and stated they will incorporate the recommendations of the VCWI in their decision-making process.

The VCWI has two tasks:

1. give advice on concrete case files that have already been dealt with in one or more of the committees for scientific integrity of the Flemish universities at the institutions concerned;
2. give advice on more general questions concerning this subject matter.

This committee thus contributes to the uniform treatment of questions in connection with research ethics and awareness-raising surrounding this issue.

More information can be found on the VCWI website www.vcwi.be. The site also describes who can consult the VCWI and how this should be done.

FWO is a member of Science Europe, which has included research integrity in its roadmap.

In the European Network of Research Integrity Offices (ENRIO) Flanders is represented by the VCWI. This network is a platform for the discussion between different European organisations about the policy on this subject.