Science in conflict

Symposium explores conflicts of interest and the extent of industry influence on scientific findings

Eugene Russo(erusso@the-scientist.com)
Jul 14, 2003

Scientists and industry watchdogs gathered in Washington, D.C. last week to explore egregious cases of industry-led manipulation and distortion of scientific research—and to suggest remedies. The 1-day symposium, held by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), is part of a CSPI project called Integrity in Science.

Project director Virginia Sharpe said that the conference was intended to help CSPI form an action plan for lobbying and advocacy strategies to prevent manipulation and suppression of scientific data, the harassment of scientists reporting potentially industry-damning results, and the raising of evidentiary standards to unreasonable levels. The group also hopes to encourage better conflict of interest policies at journals and to improve disclosure policies and achieve better balance in National Academy of Science and science advisory panels.

"We do not contend that industry-sponsored research is always bad or that companies should be prohibited from providing input...

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