Submitted to: Soil Science Society of America Journal
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: September 12, 2005
Publication Date: October 27, 2005
Citation: Logsdon, S.D. 2005. Book review of "Scientific Integrity, Third Ed.: Text and Cases in Responsible Conduct of Research". Soil Science Society of America Journal. 69:2076.
Recent, well-publicized cases of scientific misconduct have prompted universities to require graduate training in ethics. This book is geared for science educators and graduate students, but the topics are pertinent to all in scientific research. Several chapters cover general areas relevant for all in the science research community (scientific method, ethics, mentoring, assigning authors, competing interests, collaboration, record keeping). Chapters on human and animal research and genetic technology will not relate as well to soil science. The book is full of case studies, some relevant to science in general but many geared toward biomedical and biotechnical research, topics appropriate for the American Society for Microbiology. For a course in soil science ethics, additional pertinent case studies might need to be developed. Issues to consider might include soil variability in relation to traditional randomized complete block statistical designs, spurious and noisy data from automated data collection, or field cooperators that damage equipment or site characteristics or demand immediate withdrawal from their site. Overall, "Scientific Integrity" is recommended for those interested in a book on ethics, especially geared for a graduate course.