The aim of the Estonian Code of Conduct for Research Integrity is to support knowledge about, acceptance and entrenchment of research integrity in the Estonian research community. The Code of Conduct for Research Integrity describes the conduct expected from researchers and the responsibility of research institutions in ensuring research integrity, thus contributing to the increase of credibility of research in the eyes of the individual and the public.
The Code of Conduct for Research Integrity is meant to complement the Code of Ethics of Estonian Scientists adopted in 2002. The new document is needed because the development of research has brought forth new themes and perspectives not reflected in the code of ethics, and added new points for consideration. The current document also places greater emphasis on the activities of research institutions, separately pointing out the responsibility of researchers and research institutions, which helps to emphasise that responsibility for ethical research lies with everyone who is active in research. Researchers alone cannot ensure research integrity. So that researchers could behave ethically, the necessary conditions have to be created at the level of the organisation and the system.
The Code of Conduct for Research Integrity has been created as a framework document which provides guidelines to all Estonian research institutions and the researchers working there. The task of the research institution is to elaborate detailed procedural rules which help to increase awareness in the organisation about the principles of research integrity, to monitor the research environment and, if necessary, to interfere and to deal with the cases of misconduct. To ensure as equal treatment of members of different research institutions as possible, research institutions cooperate closely in drafting procedural rules and regulations.