ONR will observe, and expect institutions to observe, the following guidelines when handling allegations of scientific misconduct:
d: Reach conclusions that are fair and equitable to the subject or institution under inquiry or investigation.
V. Institution Inquires/Investigations
Applicant and awardee institutions have the primary responsibility to prevent, detect, investigate, report and resolve alleged or apparent scientific misconduct involving those institutions.
In addition to observing the ONR guidelines, institutions are expected to take the following steps in conducting scientific misconduct inquiries and investigations of ONR sponsored or managed science and technology research:
e. Conduct inquiries/investigations with fairness and the appropriate level of due process.
f. Support conclusions by a preponderance of the relevant evidence or by the standard of proof defined in the institution's scientific misconduct policy.
VI. Activity Review of Institutional Inquiries or Investigations
ONR [Inspector General] will review the investigative report and supporting documentation to determine if the institution followed usual and reasonable procedures, and to assess the accuracy, adequacy, and completeness of the report. When necessary, the institution will be asked to provide additional information.
VII. Activity Inquiries/Investigations
ONR normally defers to institutions in case of alleged scientific misconduct. However, ONR will conduct inquiries and investigations of its own when an institution is unable or unwilling to conduct a prompt, thorough, and objective inquiry/investigation or when the institution has not adequately resolved the issues.