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Scholars call for academic integrity at first international conference on research ethics

By Frank Otieno | October 1st 2021

Daystar University vice-chancellor has stressed the need to give emphasis to ethics, integrity and quality in research.

Prof Laban Ayiro and other scholars emphasised the need for academic honesty, saying it was critical for education to make an impact.

“Total lack of ethics will carry itself with you as you walk around telling people that you have a PhD, yet you know that the ethical standards of your PhD are false,” said Prof Ayiro.

Prof Walter Oyawa, the director-general of the National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation (Nacosti), said his agency had been created for the benefit of all stakeholders. “We need to build a culture whereby when one stands and gives a lecture on his area of expertise, he or she can be heard,” he said.

“Science is dependent on people having faith in what scientists do. When you mistrust science, you undermine the support given to science,” added David Ewoldsen of Michigan State University.

They spoke this week at the inaugural International Conference on Research Process and Research Ethics at Daystar University, Valley Road Campus. The conference was jointly hosted by the university, Nacosti and the Daystar University ethics review board.

Simon Nabukwesi, the Principal Secretary for University Education and Research, said the government was determined to strengthen the private sector’s involvement in research, science and technology, to fuel the growth of the economy. He lauded Daystar for prioritising research in its 2020-2025 strategic plan.

Other keynote speakers included Prof Violet Naanyu (Moi University), Kenya Industrial Property Institute (KIPI) acting managing director John Onyango and the Dean of School of Medicine and Health Sciences at the Methodist University of Kenya Prof Alice Mutungi. Online participants from all over the world are following the conference via Zoom.

Information and Communications Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru closed the conference.   

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