Flinders University, Australia has an excellent site detailing what it expects from Faculty in relation to ethical behaviour.

In particular it considers mistreatment of animals either indirectly by failing to seek ethical approval or directly by not following approved protocols that result in unnecessary harm to the animals as Research Misconduct.

As described in the following paragraph from the website:

Research misconduct includes (but is not limited to) any of the following:

  • fabrication, falsification, plagiarism, or deception in proposing, carrying out or reporting the results of research;
  •  failure to declare or manage a serious conflict of interest;
  • conducting research requiring ethics or biosafety approval without such approval, and avoidable failure to follow research proposals as approved by a research ethics or biosafety committee, particularly where this failure may result in unreasonable risk or harm to humans, animals or the environment;
  • misleading ascription of authorship;
  • falsification or misrepresentation to obtain research funding;
  • deviations from the Code through gross or persistent negligence; or
  • the wilful concealment or facilitation of research misconduct by others.

Their webpage also links to the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research.

Since there is nothing quite the same to the Australian Code in Hong Kong it is worthwhile Faculty taking time to look at the link to the Australian Code as provided above.



Antimicrobial resistance

Researchers must not use antibiotics unless necessary. Use of anti-microbials requires AEC approval and to be prescribed by the veterinarian. The use of anti-microbials prophylactic post-surgery, if the surgery was sterile, is particularly problematic and probably unnecessary. In the case of post-surgical use of prophylactic antibiotics, the researcher must provide scientific justification to the AEC.