The University of Birmingham Code of Practice for research states what the University expects of its researchers, as well as how it will respond to allegations of research misconduct.
The university has developed robust systems of ethics review for research involving human subjects, and all research is required to be logged on the University’s ethics review system. Information about the University’s ethics review requirements can be found on the University’s ethics pages.
If you have a complaint about a university research project, or about the conduct of a University of Birmingham researcher please contact the Research Governance Office.
Research and anti-terrorism legislation
Researchers are advised to pay particular attention to the requirements of the Terrorism Act 2006 and other anti terrorism legislation, which gives the police extensive powers of detention and arrest. The University has a statutory obligation to notify the authorities where there is a suspected breach of criminal law which will override any conflicting legal obligations of confidentiality, such as for example those arising from the Data Protection Act 1998 or arising from contractual provisions.
For their own protection, researchers who need to access material electronically which could potentially raise suspicion under the Terrorism Act should first arrange for their Head of College or School to write a formal letter to the Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Knowledge Transfer on University headed notepaper confirming their permission and explaining the justification for these activities in the interests of research. The letter will be acknowledged and held on file for the protection of staff to prevent any misunderstandings in the event of subsequent police investigations, and a request made to the Director of IT services for any necessary special arrangments.
University arrangements for compliance with the Human Tissue Act
Details of the University's arrangements for compliance with the Human Tissue Act can be accessed here.