Research Integrity Champions, Leads & Advisers

Good practice in research: Research Integrity Champions, Leads & Advisers


This guidance discusses how to establish a network of Research Integrity Champions, Leads and/or Advisers within an institution to help create a research environment ‘underpinned by a culture of integrity’ (see Commitment 3 of the 2019 Concordat to Support Research Integrity). It includes illustrative examples of such networks can work in practice and discussion of other options for providing support, guidance, and advice.

Safeguarding and improving research integrity – ‘good research practice’ – is a complex and multifaceted endeavour. It is also an essential one. Studies such as the landscape study undertaken by Vitae, UKRIO and UKRN highlight how the quality and ethical standards of research, and the effectiveness and wellbeing of researchers, can be negatively impacted by the culture and systems of their research environment and by the incentives and pressures which researchers face.

There is no single solution to these challenges but establishing a system of local research integrity champions (or whatever the institution’s preferred name is) can play a key part. Creating informal channels to discuss openly issues of good research practice and the challenges faced by researchers, helps to establish a dialogue around research integrity and culture. It can foster community ownership of problems and help develop solutions, as well as creating an environment which enhances collegiality and mutual support.

Supporting materials:

  • Case studies: to support our guidance, on this page you will also find case studies showing how UK institutions have implemented a model of local research integrity champions. The case studies contain detail on the model adopted, how it was set up, the duties of the local champions and how the model has been implemented to date. The case studies also address the challenges of such a model and what the institutions have learnt. Sharing this good practice gives insight into how local research integrity champions may be utilised at other UK research institutions.
  • Training: it is essential to consider what initial training/ induction and what ongoing development will be needed by research integrity champions, leads and advisers. Available below is a guidance note from UKRIO on the types of training that could be needed

Download our guidance on Research Integrity Champions, Leads & Advisers:

Good practice in research: Research Integrity Champions, Leads & Advisers V1 2021

Download the supporting materials:


The case studies above are © UK Research Integrity Office and the relevant institution 2021. This material may be copied or reproduced provided that the source is acknowledged and the material, wholly or in part, is not used for commercial gain. Use of the material for commercial gain requires the prior written permission of the UK Research Integrity Office and the relevant institution.

If you have any comments or would like to add a case study to those currently available, please contact us.