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Elizabeth Gammon, Ph.D , CPA; Luisa Franzini , PhD; Stephen Linder, PhD; Jacquelyn Slomka , PhD - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Estimating the Economic Costs of a Finding of Research Misconduct in Faculty PI’s: Case Studies from ORI Annual Reports. Elizabeth Gammon, Ph.D , CPA; Luisa Franzini , PhD; Stephen Linder, PhD; Jacquelyn Slomka , PhD Fleming Center University of Texas-School of Public Health.

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Estimating the Economic Costs of a Finding of Research Misconduct in Faculty PI’s: Case Studies from ORI Annual Reports

Elizabeth Gammon, Ph.D, CPA; Luisa Franzini, PhD; Stephen Linder, PhD; Jacquelyn Slomka, PhD

Fleming Center

University of Texas-School of Public Health

why look at economic costs of research misconduct
Why look at economic costs of research misconduct?

“ …institutional leaders may wish to ignore or minimize allegations of possible research misconduct to protect the revenue that the researcher generates; some may avoid investigations because they are costly in terms of time and money.”

Titus, et al. Repairing research integrity. Nature. 453(7198):980-2, 2008 Jun 19.

study aims
Study Aims
  • Survey Research Integrity Officers (RIO) responsible for handling findings of research misconduct regarding cost issues;
  • Develop a model to estimate the economic costs of research misconduct in publicly funded medical research from the perspective of NIH; and
  • Use the model to estimate economic costs in known findings of research misconduct
methods analytical framework transaction costs
Methods Analytical Framework: Transaction Costs

All economic costs 1

Production costs - Costs of

transforming inputs into outputs

or the direct production expenses.

Transaction costs - Costs of making

exchange or the indirect production

expenses.

Motivation costs – Costs of motivating

specialized agents to align their interests, e.g.:

Cost of cheating or opportunistic behavior,

Williamson [1975, 85].

Agency cost among owners, managers,

and debt holders,

Jensen and Meckling [1976].

Coordination costs – Costs of coordinating

actions between specialized agents, e.g.:

Cost of obtaining information, Stigler [1961].

Cost of coordinating input in production,

Alchian and Demsetz [1972].

Cost of measurement, Barzel [1982].

1http://www.encycogov.com/B11ResearchTraditions/TCE/Exhi_1DecomposeTC.asp

methods sequential mixed methods study design
MethodsSequential Mixed Methods Study Design

Qualitativemethods

Quantitative methods

methods data sources
MethodsData Sources

Sample Selection and Qualitative Methods

  • ORI Annual Reports, 2000-2005
    • Findings of Misconduct
  • Internet search
    • Institutional RIO
methods data sources1
MethodsData Sources

Quantitative Methods

  • Wage rates: American Association of Medical College 2007 Report on Medical School Faculty Salaries
  • Time Inputs: 42 CFR Parts 50 and 93 Final Rule
  • NIH Awards: Computer Retrieval of Information on Scientific Projects (CRISP) and NIH Awards by State and Foreign Site
results
Results
  • Key informant interviews
    • Economic costs are not measured nor considered in research misconduct findings
    • Emphasis on proper completion of the inquiry and investigation within the mandated timeline
results1
Results

RIO interviews

Research Misconduct Questionnaire Participation

results2
Results
  • RIO experience in position
    • Range = (< 6 months, >20 years)
    • All had additional research administration related duties
  • All RIOs believed measuring economic costs was appropriate
  • No institutions in the study sample measured economic costs of research misconduct
  • Faculty time was the single most costly element
results3
Results

Model - Economic cost components of research misconduct

results4
Results

Model - Economic cost components of research misconduct

results investigative costs
ResultsInvestigative Costs
  • Key Assumptions for Investigative Costs
    • 100% RIO time = Estimated annual burden for ORI defined tasks + institutional tasks
    • RIO expends 50% of each day during an inquiry and investigation overseeing the investigation
    • RIO hourly wage rate is $119 for PhD and $144 for MD
    • Assumption for mixed faculty rank hourly wage rate is $144/hr.
results5
Results

Receipt of allegation

Preliminary assessment

Conduct of inquiry and investigation

Institutional decision $102,115 - $141,090

ORI oversight review

PHS decision

Imposition of PHS administrative actions

$ 14,110 - $ 24,495

results12
Results
  • Calculated VEA (n=2)
  • RIO reported VEA (n=1)
results14
Results
  • RIO reported VEA – Radolf case
    • 60 month certification period
    • 2 full tenured professors
    • 4-8 hours per certification
    • 60 certifications
          • $74,880 VEA Cost
results16
Results

Calculated retraction costs

RIO reported retraction costs (Poehlman Case)

results17
Results

*RIO provided

discussion
Discussion

Economic costs of findings of research misconduct are measureable

Research misconduct cost drivers

Misaligned incentives

Downstream costs

discussion1
Discussion

Economic costs of findings of research misconduct are measureable

discussion2
Discussion
  • Research misconduct cost drivers
discussion3
Discussion
  • Misaligned incentives
    • Deterrence theory
      • Expenditures to deter misconduct determine probability of discovery
          • Misconduct detection costs have been unmeasured
          • Unfunded mandate
          • Unmeasured prevention costs
      • Punishment
          • Inconsistent, uncertain
          • Research institutions have responsibility for detection but bear little risk
discussion4

Citation Maps Retracted Articles by Duan.

.

Original

Mostfrequently

-

cited

Article A cites

Article

articles

Article B

Discussion
  • Downstream costs
    • Duan case
    • 13 publications acknowledge $ 7,314,689 total grant funding
limitations
Limitations
  • Study measures only one category of research misconduct
  • Research misconduct unmeasured if
    • Undetected
    • Unreported
limitations1
Limitations
  • No processes in place to document, estimate or measure costs associated with research misconduct
    • Economic cost model relies heavily on assumptions
  • Cost categories not considered
    • Value of a ruined career
    • Findings of misconduct attributable to non faculty
    • Responsible Conduct of Research program costs
    • Impact of flawed evidence base on public health