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Scholarly Resources and Services

An introduction to scholarly communication and various resources for researchers at UWG.

Ethics in Scholarly Communication

The Institutional Review Board (CC BY-SA 2.0) Image of Test Tubes.  Image by Jean-Etienne Minh-Duy Poirrier(IRB) is a federally mandated body responsible for the protection of human subjects involved in research. The IRB reviews, approves, and monitors research conducted under the auspices of the University of West Georgia (UWG) by its faculty, students, and staff. The primary function of the IRB is to safeguard the welfare and rights of human subjects in compliance with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  The committee assists investigators in insuring that the rights and welfare of subjects are adequately protected.

Find forms, contact information, and other details about UWG's IRB through the Office of Research and Sponsored programs.  

There are arenas related to ethics and data security.  

1) Espionage, Foreign Risks, and Threats.  

Some US Agencies are concerned about appropriation of US Grant Funded Research by foreign governments.  Individual US Government Agencies may require grant recipients to undergo training and/or to comply with security guidelines and best practices for mitigating foreign risks and threats.  

Grants in collaboration with private companies and granting agencies may also require compliance with security protocols to protect intellectual property from competitors.  

Please consult:

Aaron, David and Thea Percival (June 17, 2022) "Forthcoming Disclosure and Security Requirements for Institutions Hosting Federally Funded Research

2) Protecting Sensitive Data

Funding agencies require adherence to protocols to protect against the inadvertent disclosure, release or loss of personally identifiable, sensitive, or confidential information of research participants.  

For example, please see:  The NIH's Policy Statement on Protecting Sensitive Data and Information

Appropriate anonymization of data may be required in addition to compliance with cyber security and other protocols.  

Copyright and other Types of Intellectual Property Rights:  Permissions, and Citations

  • Publishing contracts often contain verbiage in which the authors, rather than the press, are solely responsible for issues relating  of copyright and o intellectual property infringement.
  • Keeping a record of all permissions sought and received is a task that falls to the author.   In addition to appropriate citation to written words, which are documented through notes and references, a file for graphics and media permissions is key.   Some publishers have sample forms for authors to use.  
  •  Generally, requests for permission should include:
    • Name of individual who is seeking permissio, the tentative name of project in which the intellectual property will be used, Publisher, and, if it has already been assigned, the ISBN.
    • Name of person from whom you are seeking permission
    • Description of the image for which permission is being sought (URL, address, verbal desciription,  possibly screen shot.
    • Information about whether permission is given for the item may be modified (ie, cropped, recolored, etc). 
    • Notes about use fees/rolyalties (include receipts if paid).  
  • Signature and date of the person from whom permission is sought.  
  • Attach all email correpondance.  


For information on citations, please refer to Ingram Library's Citation Guide.  

For information on Citation management tools and software, please refer to Ingram Library's Citation Management Guide.  



Civility in Scholarly Communication 

Many academic societies are now creating civility standards or professional conduct policies to guide scholarly exchanges in their print publications and at their conferences.  

While one may be passionate about one's subject, and disagreement is healthy and contributes to advances in the academy, a tone of collegiality is appreciated.  Key concepts in policies that are developed by academic societies include integrity in one's work, trust, and respect.  Kindness and collegiality should hold sway even though individual research may result in divergent points of view, correction of earlier materials, or superseding the works of others.      

Resources (including some sample civility policies from professional organizations):

  • Kelly, Bob . "7 Ways A Chair Can promote Collegiality."  Academic Leader Today, 30.9(2014)4,7.  Although focused on departmental interactions, many of the precepts would be apt for academic conferences.  
  • American Historical Association, "Statement on Standards of Professional Conduct". Updated 2019.  (Last accessed, July 2022).  An example of a coded produced by a learned society.  
  • Society of Biblical Literature. "Professional Conduct Policy".  (Last accessed, July 2022). This is an example of the type of policy that a professional organization has developed.  


Other Ethical Considerations

Additional ethical considerations may include:

  • Disclosing Conflicts of Interest
  • Being clear about the limits of one's expertise
  • Behaving, speaking, and writing in ways that reflect best practices related to Diversity and Inclusion and which seek to eliminate racism, sexism, and other types of oppression.  
  • Ensuring wide access to research through selection of publishers with wide distribution and affordable pricing.  Consider open access for the most equitable distribution of knowledge when possible.  
  • When traveling for research, being aware of and following the laws of the countries and lands in which one is working and being sensitive to cultural differences.  


Oleinik A. Conflict(s) of Interest in Peer Review: Its Origins and Possible SolutionsScience & Engineering Ethics. 2014;20(1):55-75. doi:10.1007/s11948-012-9426-z.  (UWG Net ID Required for Access).

Raju R., Adam A, Powell C. . Promoting Open Scholarship in Africa: Benefits and Best Library PracticesLibrary Trends. 2015;64(1):136-160. doi:10.1353/lib.2015.0036  (UWG Net ID Required for Access)

Ruedinger E, Evans YN, Balasubramaniam V. Abolishing Racism and Other Forms of Oppression in Scholarly CommunicationJournal of Adolescent Health. 2021;69(1):10-13. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2021.04.007 -- This is the citation only.  Access to the full article may require Interlibrary Loan.