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The University of Cantabria declares its intention to ensure that its research is carried out in an ethical and socially responsible manner, with the objective of making its results more valid and to continue to enjoy the trust and support of the society.

To this end, the Vice-Rectorate for Research and Scientific Politics is structured by three independent bodies:
1.    The Research Ethics Commission is a multidisciplinary consultative body whose mission is to issue reports, proposals and recommendations for the UC on matters related to the ethical implications of research.
2.    The Bioethics Board reviews and authorises projects involving the use of research animals, biohazards or genetically modified organisms.
3.    The Research Project Ethics Board authorises the execution of projects in the other fields of activity, including non-clinical research involving human subjects.

In addition to these bodies, the UC has a Code of Good Research Practices that commits all its researchers in all phases of the development of their projects.
Recently, the Protocol of Action in cases of malpractice in research at the University of Cantabria has recently been approved.
This web page has been created with the intention of making this activity for the UC publicly known and to facilitate researchers in the task of complying with the ethical requirements their research projects need.

Code of good practices
The Code of Good Practice in Research from the UC is a document that establishes the guidelines, recommendations and commitments for carrying out research activities at the University. It is the instrument of self-regulation that, as a complement to the existing legal regulations, promotes and guarantees the good practice of research activity.

The Code of Good Practice in Research from the UC was approved on 24 July 2012 by the Governing Board and drawn up by the Research Ethics Commission with the participation of the entire university community.

The Code was adopted as a frame of reference to which the various research activities of the University should conform, in accordance with the increasingly accepted principles of Scientific Integrity and University Social Responsibility. Also, from its first version, the Code was seen as something dynamic that should be adapted to new developments in the various fields of science and their regulation.

Since March 2016, the Code has been openly available for download on the UC website and 500 copies of a printed edition have been distributed to trainee researchers and members of the research community, although the Code is unknown to most members of the University of Cantabria.

Due to these facts, the Research Ethics Commission proposed to undertake the renewal of the Code, updating and improving those aspects that required it. Similar to what was done in its first drafting, the participation of the greatest number of people, from all levels, has been sought in order to try to have the best possible Code.

To achieve this, a consultation period was opened and with the material received, the Research Ethics Commission will prepare a new version. This version will be distributed online and in print and will be the object of a dissemination campaign, so that the Code becomes better known and serves as a reference for responsible and integrated conduct in research at the University of Cantabria.

Code of Good Practice Doctoral School

The Doctoral School of the University of Cantabria (EDUC) aims to train its doctoral students, i.e. to prepare research professionals in different scientific disciplines through the University's doctoral programmes. The Code of good practice of a good researcher can be extended to researchers in training and to the administrative and service staff of the EDUC.
All members of the EDUC must carry out their activity, within the EDUC, in accordance with the ethical principles that inspire this Code of Good Practice, so that this activity of promoting knowledge responds to the universally adopted expectations of defending the common good and improving the living conditions of humanity.
The common good must take precedence over the particular interests of the EDUC's activities, without impeding individual freedom and creativity. The members of the EDUC shall assume the responsibilities deriving from the exercise of their activity, which shall never harm the health or dignity of the human being. Furthermore, scientific activity must be transparent, giving due importance to peer review and the social impact of its research.
The EDUC code of good practice should be in line with the code of good practice in research adopted by the University of Cantabria.
The good practices concern both the procedure and the results of the research.

Research Integrity Code UC

The Research Ethics Commission from the UC
The Research Ethics Commission from the UC is a collegiate and consultative body whose mission is to issue reports, proposals and recommendations for the UC on matters related to the ethical implications of research. It is also responsible for drawing up the code of good practice in scientific research and for representing the UC in supranational and international forums and bodies involved in research ethics. The Commission is linked to the Vice-Rectorate for Research and Scientific Politics, to which it is organically dependent but functionally independent.

As a complement and consequence of the approval of the Code of Good Practice, the Commission has drawn up a Protocol of Action in Cases of Malpractice in Research at the University of Cantabria, which was approved by the Governing Board of the UC in June 2018.

The UC Research Ethics Commission consists of one representative from each of the five branches of knowledge (Sciences; Health Sciences; Social and Legal Sciences; Arts and Humanities; Engineering and Architecture), as well as a representative of the Doctoral School, an expert in research management at the UC, an expert in corporate social responsibility and a representative of the doctoral students.

Professional liability

Following the basic guidelines established by the European Commission in 2001, the University of Cantabria defines Social Responsibility as the voluntary integration by companies or organisations of ethical, social and environmental concerns in their activities and in their relations with their stakeholders.
The University of Cantabria sees University Social Responsibility as an opportunity to strengthen quality and excellence, as one of the missions of the university is to contribute to social progress through its commitment to teaching and scientific excellence.

The UC's Strategic Plan 2019-2023 assumes Social Responsibility as one of its lines of action and promotes the implementation of the 1st Master Plan for University Social Responsibility and its integration in all the institution's spheres of action. The main objective of this Plan is to serve as a firm commitment, orientation and guide to integrate Social Responsibility (SR) in all areas of activity of the University of Cantabria.
On the other hand, University Social Responsibility (USR) is supervised by the USR Advisory Board, which proposes new lines of work in this area and has been publishing the UC's RSU Report and the United Nations Global Compact's UC Progress Reports since 2008.

The professional responsibility of the researcher is also addressed by the UC Research Ethics Board. The protection and management of intellectual property is also addressed in the institution's internal regulations. The University of Cantabria is committed to faithfully ensuring compliance with copyright, intellectual rights and confidentiality rules, as well as avoiding the duplication of research results. In this field, the University Library (BUC) offers a wide range of resources for the prevention of plagiarism in research work, promoting the appropriate and responsible use of information among the members of the university community. The BUC has created different guides, tutorials and training materials in this area, accessible through the following link. It also offers online courses on topics such as intellectual property management as part of the Teachers Training Plan.

Institutional Open Access Policy
The University of Cantabria is immersed in an institutional open access policy to ensure that, the university’s scientific production is archived in the institutional repository (UCrea Institutional Repository) and thus comply with the mandate of the funding bodies (EU Research and Innovation Framework Programme and in Spain, article 37 of the Law on Science, Technology and Innovation). Along with the Open Course Ware, these tools constitute the UC's open access knowledge dissemination channels. Complete information on open access in the UC:

Institutional Policy on Open Access to the academic, scientific and research production of the University of Cantabria. July 2012.

In March 2019, UC launched its Open Data portal, a new tool that stores statistical data (education, research, governance, etc.), making public information more accessible to all. The Open Data portal will contribute to integrity, transparency and accountability to society. UC is also working on the creation of a portal designed to give visibility to research results.

Public participation
The UC's Strategic Plan 2019-2023 highlights the importance of society's participation in science. The UC has implemented actions aimed at bringing science and society closer together, mainly through its Scientific Culture and Innovation Unit (UCC + i), whose main objective is to promote the communication and dissemination of research carried out at the University. UCCI + i collaborates in the proposals for the development of scientific dissemination and innovation organised by R&D groups, institutes and departments of the University of Cantabria. Among the main types of activities carried out, there are: presentations of doctoral theses, Annual Science Fair, Researchers' Night, Pint of Science, or the International Day of Women and Girls in Science.

The UC Cultural Campus contributes specifically to disseminate scientific knowledge, promoting artistic and cultural creation and facilitating society's access to culture through its programme of activities.

Dissemination and exploitation of results

The Transfer and Management Units provide the necessary support for the creation of new patents, participation in R&D&I projects and the management of industrial and intellectual property within the framework of these projects, the organisation of research conferences, and advice on the scientific and technical services required by research staff.
- Valorisation Office (OVA)
- Office for the Transfer of Research Results (OTRI)
- European Research Projects Office (OPEI)
- Leonardo Torres Quevedo Foundation
- Research Management Service
- Scientific and Technical Research Services

Regarding the dissemination and exploitation of results, the Office for the Valorisation and Commercialisation of Research (OVA) promotes and manages the Industrial and Intellectual Property generated by researchers in order to optimise its transfer and commercialisation. It disseminates the UC's patent portfolio and organises courses and training activities on intellectual and industrial property.

The University of Cantabria has developed different regulations and internal rules in relation to the procedures for managing the ownership of research results (UC R&D&I Results Regulations) to adapt to the current legal framework, preserving the right of research staff to create knowledge. It also has specific regulations concerning the establishment of service contracts signed by research and teaching staff (technical or artistic projects): Regulations on current R&D under contract (UC Regulations for contracting work under Article 83 of the LOU).

The Research Results Transfer Office (OTRI) collaborates with the OVA in the preparation of licensing agreements and contracts linked to research results. It is also responsible for preparing statistics on the research activity carried out by the University of Cantabria and updates and disseminates its scientific-technological offer through the Catalogue of Research Groups (link to its internal browser).

On the other hand, the UC Library (BUC) has, in its research section, an online manual on copyright and intellectual property in research results published on its website.

It should be noted that the University of Cantabria systematically collects and records the scientific production of its researchers in order to analyse it properly (PAAIT) and disseminate it better (Research Staff Portal, UCrea), as approved by the Governing Council:
Making the results of scientific activity at the University more widely known and easier to find in a single, common space enhances the reputation of researchers and the institution, as well as public transparency and accountability to society, and benefits free access to knowledge for everyone.