2019 Survey of research culture in Australian NHMRC-funded institutions: survey findings report

Research institutes Research management Research methodology Medicine Medical ethics Australia

The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) is committed to ensuring that NHMRC-funded research is of the highest quality. In May 2019, the NHMRC commissioned ORIMA Research to conduct a survey on its behalf in relation to the research culture in Australian NHMRC-funded institutions.

The survey aimed to better understand:

  • the relevance of globally identified drivers, enablers and barriers to excellence in research quality in NHMRC-funded institutions;
  • the views and experiences of individuals who are responsible for research conduct and quality in NHMRC-funded institutions;
  • major pressures and environmental issues around research quality in NHMRC-funded institutions; and
  • opportunities for change and innovation in the industry

The target groups for the survey were research students; senior, mid-career and junior researchers; institutional representatives; and ethics committee members (Human Research Ethics Committees and Animal Ethics Committees).

Key messages:

  • Attitudes are largely supportive of discussing and improving research practices
  • Most institutions and research groups have or are developing policies and procedures to support high quality research
  • The institutional environment is important for encouraging high-quality research
  • Researchers face a range of pressures that can have negative effects on research quality
  • Ethics committees receive information relevant to research quality
  • Researchers, institutions and funders all have an important role to play in improving research quality
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