Good sci­entific prac­tice

Scientific work is based on fundamental principles of methodical, systematic and verifiable procedure, which are the same in all disciplines and internationally and interculturally. First and foremost is honesty towards oneself and others. Quality assurance and formulation of substantive law is the responsibility of the universities.

This guideline is based on:

- the Code "Guidelines for Ensuring Good Scientific Practice" of the German Research Foundation (DFG) as amended in August 2019,
- the Model Statutes on Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice and Dealing with Suspected Cases of Scientific Misconduct of the 33rd General Assembly of the German Rectors' Conference of May 10, 2022.

It is legally binding for all persons engaged in research or research support activities in the field of higher education.

Section I: Principles of Good Scientific Practice

§ Section 1 Scope of these Statutes 

(1) The principles of good scientific practice to be observed in accordance with these bylaws shall be announced to all persons working at HNU on the university's website. In addition, all scientific employees or civil servants under employment law will be informed of the entry into force of these statutes by e-mail.
(2) All academic staff at HNU are obliged and responsible for complying with the rules of good academic practice in their conduct.
(3) Rights and obligations under employment and service law are not affected by these bylaws.

§ 2 Individual Principles of Good Scientific Practice

The principles of good scientific practice include, in particular,

1. to work lege artis,
2. to maintain strict honesty with regard to one's own and third parties' contributions,
3. to consistently challenge all results oneself, and
4. to allow and encourage critical discourse in the scientific community.

§ 3 Professional Ethics of Scientific Workers

(1) The teaching of the fundamentals of good scientific work begins at the earliest possible stage in scientific training (including teaching) and careers.
(2) Scientific workers shall stand up for the fundamental values of scientific work.
(3) Involving all career levels, scientific workers go through a continuous process of learning and further education with regard to good scientific practice. To this end, they shall exchange information and support each other.

§ 4 Organizational responsibility of the university management

(1) The management of the university shall have the competence and the organizational responsibility for the observance of good scientific practice at the university.
(2) The university management shall create the framework conditions for scientific work at the university that complies with the rules by establishing an institutional organizational structure that is appropriate in this respect. In this way, the university management creates the preconditions for academics to comply with legal and ethical standards.
(3) Clear procedures and principles for personnel selection and development are laid down in writing at the university, with particular emphasis on equal opportunities and diversity.
(4) Support structures and concepts are established for the promotion of researchers in early career phases.

§ 5 Responsibility of the heads of work units

(1) The head of a scientific work unit is responsible for the entire unit he or she leads.
(2) The responsibility of the head of a scientific work unit includes, in particular, the obligation to provide individual support for young scientists embedded in the overall concept of the university, as well as to promote the careers of scientific and science-accessory personnel, and for teaching the principles of scientific probity. Reference is made to the "Recommendation on Personnel Development for Academic Staff at Neu-Ulm University of Applied Sciences".
(3) The cooperation in the scientific working units is such that the unit as a whole can fulfill its tasks, that the necessary cooperation and coordination take place and that all members are aware of their roles, rights and duties.
(4) Abuse of power and exploitation of relationships of dependence shall be counteracted by appropriate organizational measures both at the level of the individual working units and at the level of the university management.
(5) Academics shall enjoy a balance of support and personal responsibility commensurate with their career level.

§ 6 Evaluation of academic performance

The evaluation of the performance of scientists follows a multidimensional approach. A significant component of the assessment is the scientific performance, which is to be evaluated primarily according to qualitative standards. Quantitative indicators can be differentiated and reflected in the overall evaluation. In addition to scientific performance, other aspects may be taken into account.

§ 7 Cross-phase quality assurance

(1) Scientists carry out each step of the research process de lege artis. Continuous and cross-phase quality assurance shall take place.
(2) The origin of data, organisms, materials and software used in the research process shall be identified, with citation of the original sources, and the requirements for subsequent use shall be documented. If publicly available software is used, it must be documented in a persistent and citable manner, citing the source code, as far as this is possible and reasonable.
(3) The type and scope of research data generated in the research process shall be described.
(4) An essential component of quality assurance is that it is made possible for other scientists to replicate results or findings.

(5) If scientific findings are made publicly available (also via other channels than publications), the applied quality assurance mechanisms are always outlined. If, in retrospect, discrepancies or errors concerning such findings become apparent or are pointed out, they will be corrected.

§ 8 Actors involved, responsibilities, roles

(1) The roles and responsibilities of the scientific actors involved in a research project must be defined in an appropriate manner and be clear at all times.
(2) If necessary, the roles and responsibilities shall be adjusted.

§ 9 Research design

1) When planning a project, scientists and scholars shall take the current state of research fully into account and recognize it. As a rule, this requires careful research into research achievements that are already publicly available.
(2) The university management shall ensure the resources required for this research.
(3) Researchers shall apply methods to avoid bias (including unconscious bias) in the interpretation of findings, to the extent possible and reasonable.

§ 10 Legal and ethical framework of research

(1) Scientists shall handle the freedom of research granted to them by the constitution in a responsible manner.
(2) HNU is a member of the Joint Ethics Committee of Bavarian Universities (GEHBa).
(3) In their conduct, academics shall observe their rights and obligations, in particular those resulting from legal requirements and from contracts with third parties.
(4) Scientifically active persons obtain approvals and ethics votes, if required, and submit them to the competent bodies.

(5) Scientists are continuously aware of the risk of misuse of research results, especially in security-relevant research. Research consequences are thoroughly assessed, and ethical implications of the research are evaluated.

§ 11 Rights of Use

(1) Researchers shall conclude documented agreements on the rights of use of data and results arising from the research project at the earliest possible time.
(2) The right to use data and results shall be granted in particular to the scientist who collected the data.    
(3) The parties entitled to use the data shall agree on whether and how third parties are to be granted access to the research data.

§ Section 12 Methods and Standards
(1) Scientifically sound and comprehensible methods shall be used in research.

(2) In the development and application of new methods, scientific activities shall attach particular importance to quality assurance and to the establishment of standards.

§ 13 Documentation

(1) Scientists shall document all information relevant to the achievement of a research result as comprehensibly as is necessary and appropriate in the field concerned in order to be able to review and evaluate the result and to enable replication. If specific professional recommendations exist for the review and evaluation, the scientific staff shall carry out the documentation in accordance with the respective requirements. When research software is developed, its source code is documented as far as this is possible and reasonable.
(2) Individual results that do not support the own hypothesis are also documented in principle. A selection of results is inadmissible.
(3) If the documentation does not meet the requirements according to paragraphs 1 and 2, the limitations and reasons for this shall be explained in a comprehensible manner.

(4) Primary data as the basis for publications must be stored on durable and secure data carriers at the institution where they originated or at HNU for ten years from the date on which public access was established. HNU will provide appropriate storage facilities for this purpose. The HNU Computer Center shall provide appropriate and suitable storage space for the storage of digital data and its backup. The author of the publication is responsible for the correct and complete storage of the data in the infrastructure. 
(5) Documentation and research results must not be manipulated. They shall be protected against manipulation in the best possible way.

§ 14 Creation of public access to research results

(1) As a matter of principle, scientifically active persons shall contribute all their results to the scientific discourse.
(2) In individual cases, there may be reasons not to make results publicly accessible. In principle, the decision to make results publicly available must not depend on third parties; rather, scientific and scholarly workers shall, as a matter of principle, decide on their own responsibility and in consideration of the The decision as to whether, how and where to make their results publicly available depends on the customs of the respective field. Exceptions are permitted, in particular, where the rights of third parties are affected, patent applications are in prospect, or the research is commissioned or relevant to safety.
(3) If results are made publicly accessible, they shall be described completely and comprehensibly. This also includes making available the research data, materials and information on which the results are based, the methods applied and the software used, insofar as this is possible and reasonable. This is done according to the so-called FAIR principles: Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Re-Usable. Exceptions are permitted in the context of patent applications.
(4) Self-programmed software shall be made accessible, stating its source code, insofar as this is possible and reasonable. If necessary, licensing shall take place. Work processes shall be described in detail.
(5) Own and external preparatory work must be completely and correctly demonstrated, unless this can be exceptionally waived in the case of own, already publicly accessible results. At the same time, the repetition of the contents of own publications is limited to the extent necessary for comprehension.

§ 15 Authorship

(1) An author is a person who has made a genuine and comprehensible contribution to the content of a scientific text, data or software publication. Whether a genuine and comprehensible contribution exists depends on the subject-specific principles of scientific work and is to be assessed in each individual case.
(2) If a contribution is not sufficient to establish authorship, support may be appropriately acknowledged in footnotes, in the preface, or in acknowledgements. Honorary authorship in which no sufficient contribution has been made is inadmissible, as is the inference of authorship solely on the basis of a managerial or supervisory function.
(3) All authors must agree to the final version of the work to be published; they bear joint responsibility for the publication unless explicitly stated otherwise. Without sufficient reason, consent to publication may not be withheld. Rather, the refusal must be justified with verifiable criticism of data, methods, or results.

(4) Scientists shall agree in good time - as a rule at the latest when formulating the manuscript - on who is to be the author of the research results. The agreement shall be based on comprehensible criteria and shall take into account the conventions of each discipline.

§ 16 Publication organs

(1) The scientific quality of a contribution does not depend on the publication medium in which it is made publicly available. In addition to publications in books and scientific journals, specialized repositories, data repositories, software repositories, and blogs are also considered.
(2) Authors shall carefully select the publication organ, taking into account its quality and visibility in the respective field of discourse. 
(3) Those who take over an editorship carefully check for which publication organs this is done.

§ Section 17 Confidentiality and Neutrality in Assessments and Consultations

(1) Honest conduct is the basis of the legitimacy of a judgment process.
(2) Scientifically active persons who, in particular, assess manuscripts, funding applications or the expulsion of persons are obliged to maintain strict confidentiality in this respect. They shall immediately disclose all facts that may give rise to concern of bias to the competent body.
(3) Confidentiality shall include that content to which access is gained within the scope of the function is not passed on to third parties and may not be used for own purposes.
(4) Paras. 1 and 2 shall apply mutatis mutandis to members of scientific advisory and decision-making bodies.

Section II: Ombudsman service

§ 18 Ombudspersons

(1) HNU has two ombudspersons and an equal number of deputy ombudspersons. The deputies are provided for the case that there is a concern of bias with regard to an ombudsperson who is responsible per se or the ombudsperson is prevented from performing his or her function. The question of whether there is a concern of bias shall be assessed in accordance with Section 21 of the Bavarian Administrative Procedure Act (BayVwVfG). In case of doubt, the investigating commission shall decide in accordance with Section III.
 (2) Scientists of integrity may be appointed as ombudspersons or deputies. When appointing ombudspersons, the subject cultures represented at HNU should also be taken into account. The ombudspersons and their deputies may not be members of the investigative commission, the university management or the senate, or deans during their term of office. 
(3) Appointments shall be made by the university administration after election by the university senate. 
(5) The term of office of an ombudsperson or deputy ombudsperson shall be five years. A single re-election is permissible.
(6) Ombudspersons and their deputies shall receive the necessary substantive support and acceptance from the HNU management in the performance of their duties.

§ 19 Ombud activities

(1) The ombudspersons and their deputies shall perform their ombud activities in accordance with § 18 independently, in particular independently of instructions or informal case-related influence by the university management and other university bodies. The ombud activities shall be carried out confidentially, i.e. in compliance with confidentiality.
(2) The ombudspersons shall prepare an annual report, which shall be made public to the university, and shall report to the Senate. 
(2) All members and affiliates of HNU may contact the ombudspersons regarding questions of good scientific practice, but also regarding suspected scientific misconduct. Alternatively, members and affiliates of HNU have the possibility to turn to the supra-regionally active ombudsman committee "Ombudsman Committee for Scientific Integrity in Germany".
(3) The university management shall ensure that the local ombudspersons and their deputies are known at HNU. The identity and contact details of the respective persons in office shall be made public.

(4) Ombudspersons advise as neutral and qualified contact persons in questions of good scientific practice and in suspected cases of scientific misconduct. They contribute, as far as possible, to solution-oriented conflict mediation.
(5) Ombudspersons or their deputies accept inquiries confidentially and forward suspected cases of scientific misconduct to the responsible office at HNU according to Section III, if necessary.

Section III: Procedures for Dealing with Scientific Misconduct

§ Section 20 General Principles for Dealing with Suspected Cases of Scientific Misconduct

(1) All offices at HNU that investigate a suspicion of scientific misconduct within the scope of their responsibility shall do their utmost to protect both the whistleblower and the person(s) affected by the allegations (accused) in an appropriate manner. The responsible bodies are aware that the conduct of proceedings and the final, possible imposition of sanctions can represent considerable interference with the legal interests of the accused.

2) The investigation of allegations of scientific misconduct must at all times be conducted in accordance with the rule of law, fairly and with the presumption of innocence. The investigation shall also be conducted confidentially. Investigations shall be conducted without regard to the person, and decisions shall be made without regard to the person.
(3) Reports by persons providing information must be made in good faith. Whistleblowers must have objective evidence that standards of good scientific practice may have been violated. If the whistleblower is unable to verify the facts on which the suspicion is based, or if there are uncertainties in the interpretation of the regulations on good scientific practice according to Section I with regard to an observed event, the whistleblower shall contact the persons according to Section 19 (1) and (2) to clarify the suspicion.
(4) Neither the person providing the information nor the accused person should suffer any disadvantages for his/her own scientific or professional advancement as a result of providing the information. For the accused person, this shall apply until misconduct has been proven and established. For persons in early career phases, the display should not lead to delays during their qualification, if possible. The preparation of final theses and doctoral dissertations should not be disadvantaged. The same applies to working conditions and possible contract extensions.
(5) The person making the report shall be protected even if misconduct is not proven in the proceedings. Other provisions shall only apply if the allegation has been reported against better knowledge.
(6) All agencies involved in the proceedings shall do their utmost to ensure that the entire proceedings are conducted as promptly as possible. They shall take the necessary steps to complete each stage of the proceedings within a reasonable period of time.
(7) A report of suspicion in which the person making the report does not disclose his/her identity (anonymous report) shall not be reviewed.
(8) The competent body shall treat the identity of the person providing the information confidentially and shall not disclose it to third parties without the consent of the person providing the information. The consent shall be given in text form. Disclosure without consent may take place if there is a corresponding legal obligation. Disclosure may also take place in exceptional cases if the accused person cannot otherwise defend himself properly because the identity of the person providing the information is important for this. Before the identity of the person providing the information is disclosed, he or she shall be informed of the intended disclosure. The person can then decide whether to withdraw the SAR. In the event of a withdrawal, disclosure shall not take place unless there is a legal obligation to disclose. The investigation procedure may nevertheless be continued if a balancing of interests shows that this is in the interest of scientific integrity in Germany or in the legitimate interest of HNU.
(9) The confidentiality of the proceedings is subject to restrictions if the person providing the information turns to the public with his/her suspicion. The body responsible for the investigation shall decide on a case-by-case basis at its due discretion how to deal with the breach of confidentiality by the person providing the information.

§ 21 Elements of scientific misconduct

(1) Scientific misconduct occurs when a person working scientifically at HNU intentionally or grossly negligently makes false statements in a context relevant to science, appropriates other people's scientific achievements without authorization, or impairs the research activities of others. The special circumstances according to paragraphs 5 to 8 remain unaffected.

(2) False statements are
a) the fabrication of scientifically relevant data or research results,
b) falsifying scientifically relevant data or research results, in particular by suppressing or eliminating data or results obtained in the research process without disclosing this, or by falsifying a representation or illustration,
c) incongruent presentation of image and associated statement,
d) incorrect science-related information in a funding application or in the context of the reporting obligation
(e) claiming authorship or co-authorship of another person without that person's consent.
(3) An inadmissible attribution of third-party scientific achievements shall be deemed to have occurred in the following cases:
a) Unmarked adoption of third-party content without the required citation of the source ("plagiarism"),
b) unauthorized use of research approaches, research results and scientific ideas ("theft of ideas"),
c) unauthorized disclosure of scientific data, theories and findings to third parties,
d) presumption or unfounded assumption of authorship or co-authorship of a scientific publication, especially if no genuine, traceable contribution to the scientific content of the publication has been made, 

e) Falsification of the scientific content,
f) unauthorized publication and unauthorized making available to third parties as long as the scientific work, finding, hypothesis, teaching or research approach has not yet been published.
(4) Interference with the research activity of others shall be deemed to have occurred in particular in the following cases:
(a) Sabotage of research activity (including damaging, destroying, or tampering with experimental setups, equipment, records, hardware, software, chemicals, or other property needed by others for research purposes),
(b) Falsification or unauthorized disposal of research data or research documents,
(c) falsification or unauthorized disposal of research data documentation.
(5) Scientific misconduct by persons engaged in scientific work at HNU also results - in the case of intent or gross negligence - from
a) co-authorship of a publication that contains false information or inadmissibly appropriated third-party scientific achievements,

b) neglect of supervisory duties, if another person has objectively committed the facts of scientific misconduct as defined in paragraphs 1 to 4 and this would have been prevented or made considerably more difficult by the necessary and reasonable supervision.
(6) Scientific misconduct also results from the intentional participation (in the sense of instigation or aiding and abetting) in the intentional misconduct of others which is a criminal offense under these Statutes.
(7) Scientific misconduct on the part of persons providing expert opinions or committee members of HNU shall be deemed to have occurred if they intentionally or by gross negligence
a) unauthorizedly exploit for their own scientific purposes scientific data, theories or findings of which they have become aware in the course of their activities as reviewers or committee members,
b) in the course of their activities as reviewers or panel members, unauthorizedly disclose data, theories or findings to third parties in violation of the confidentiality of the proceedings,
c) in the course of their activities as persons providing expert opinions or committee members, fail to disclose to the competent body facts or circumstances that could give rise to concerns of bias.

(8) Scientific misconduct shall also be deemed to have occurred if a person providing an expert opinion or a member of a committee of HNU, in the course of his/her activities, with the intention of obtaining an advantage for himself/herself or another person, fails to disclose facts against his/her better knowledge, from which scientific misconduct of the other person within the meaning of paragraphs 1 to 5 can be inferred.
(9) Careless handling of allegations of scientific misconduct, a fortiori the making of deliberately incorrect allegations, also constitutes a form of scientific misconduct. Accusations may not be made unchecked and without sufficient control of the facts.

§ 22 Investigation Commission

(1) HNU shall maintain a permanent investigative commission to conduct investigations of allegations of scientific misconduct. 

The investigating commission shall consist of:
1. one professor from each faculty of HNU. The professors are elected by the respective faculty council with one deputy each.

2. one academic staff member from among the academic staff of HNU. The Senate of HNU elects this person and his/her deputy. The representative of the academic staff in the Senate proposes an election list to the Senate for this purpose,
3. the legal advisor of HNU or his/her deputy.

The voting members of the commission according to No. 1 and No. 2 as well as their deputies are appointed by the university management after election by the Senate/Faculty Council. The term of office of the persons named in No. 1 and No. 2 shall be five years with the possibility of re-election.
Members of the university management and the deans of HNU cannot be elected as members of the commission. The investigative commission elects a chairperson and a deputy chairperson from among its members. Decisions are made by a majority of its voting members. 
The following are members of the commission as advisory, non-voting members:
- the ombudspersons,
- a student representative from the senate, if student concerns (especially student defendants) are affected.

The investigating committee may, at its own discretion, call in experts from the field of a scientific issue to be assessed as well as experts for dealing with such cases as additional members with an advisory vote within the framework of the formal investigation. These may include, among others, mediation advisors.

(2) In the event of a concern about bias or if a member of the Commission is prevented from attending for more than a short period of time, his or her deputy shall take over. Sections 22 et seq. of the Code of Criminal Procedure shall apply mutatis mutandis to concerns of partiality. Concerns of bias may be raised by all voting members of the commission, by ombudspersons of the university or by accused persons. The Commission shall decide on the matter to the exclusion of the person against whom the claim of bias is directed. Procedural actions that cannot be postponed may still be taken.
(3) All members of the Commission entitled to vote shall have equal voting rights. Resolutions shall be passed by simple majority; in the event of a tie, the chairperson shall have the casting vote. The Commission shall only have a quorum if at least 4 persons are present and can validly vote.

(4) The members of the commission and their deputies shall perform their activities independently, in particular independently of instructions or informal case-related influence by the university management and other university bodies. The activity shall be carried out confidentially, i.e. in compliance with confidentiality.
(5) The investigative commission shall work and meet confidentially and non-publicly.
(6) The current composition of the investigative commission can be obtained from the following office: Office of Legal Affairs

§ Section 23 Initiation of an Investigation

(1) Whistleblowers shall submit a suspicious activity report to an ombudsperson or a deputy in accordance with § 19. A SAR must be made in text form and in good faith. If whistleblowers contact a member of the investigative commission directly with their SAR, the member shall forward the SAR to a competent ombudsperson for the sake of competence.
(2) Notwithstanding Section 18(1) of these Statutes, Sections 22 et seq. of the Code of Criminal Procedure shall apply mutatis mutandis to concerns about bias on the part of ombudspersons in their role in the proceedings under Section III. The Investigation Commission shall decide in accordance with Section 24 of these Statutes.

(3) The competent ombudsperson or deputy shall examine in confidence whether there are sufficiently concrete indications that a person has committed an offense pursuant to Section 21 in a prosecutable manner. The ombudsperson may conduct preliminary investigations in this connection; Section 23 (2) shall apply mutatis mutandis.
(4) If the ombudsperson comes to the conclusion that there are sufficiently concrete grounds for suspicion pursuant to paragraph 3, he shall initiate a preliminary investigation.

§ Section 24 Preliminary Examination

(1) Initially, the ombudspersons shall conduct a preliminary examination.
The ombudspersons shall first discuss the allegations of scientific misconduct among themselves. If an initial suspicion cannot be dispelled beyond doubt, the whistleblower and the accused shall be heard separately on the facts of the case while maintaining confidentiality.

The ombudspersons examine the allegations independently of one another from the point of view of plausibility with regard to concreteness and significance, possible motives and with regard to possibilities of clearing up the allegations.
The ombudspersons shall at all times endeavor to mediate between the parties to the proceedings. If the mediation efforts lead to an amicable settlement of the allegations, the proceedings are discontinued and archived by the ombudspersons. 
Should at least one ombudsperson consider the existence of scientific misconduct to be sufficiently probable, the investigative commission will be instructed to bring the facts to a final clarification, §§ 24 para. 2, 25.
Should the ombudspersons come to the conclusion that no scientific misconduct has occurred, the procedure shall be terminated and the decision shall be explained to the whistleblower in writing and in a comprehensible manner. If the accused has already been consulted, he/she must also be informed of the decision.
If the whistleblower does not agree with the decision of the ombudspersons, he/she has the right to request a new hearing within a period of fourteen days.

(2) Preliminary examination by the investigating commission
The person(s) accused of suspected misconduct shall immediately be given the opportunity by the investigating commission to comment, stating the incriminating facts and evidence. The deadline for the statement is four weeks. The name of the whistleblower(s) shall not be disclosed to the accused at this stage without his/her consent. 
After receipt of the statement from the accused or after the deadline has expired, the investigative commission shall make a decision within two weeks as to whether the preliminary examination procedure is to be terminated - with notification of the reasons to the accused and the whistleblower(s) - because the suspicion has not been sufficiently confirmed or alleged misconduct has been fully clarified, or whether a transfer to the formal investigation procedure is to be made. 
If the whistleblower does not agree with the discontinuation of the investigation procedure, he/she has the right to appeal to the investigation committee within two weeks, which will reconsider its decision.

A discontinuation of the proceedings due to insignificance is possible if the investigating commission determines a less serious scientific misconduct and the accused, who has contributed significantly to the clarification, offers a measure himself/herself, in particular an erratum, if necessary, or measures have already been taken to remedy any damage that has occurred. This decision shall be communicated to the whistleblower.

§ Section 25 Course of the Formal Investigation

(1) The opening of the formal investigation procedure shall be communicated to the university management by the chairperson of the investigation committee.
(2) The investigation committee shall deliberate in a non-public oral session. It shall examine in free assessment of evidence whether academic misconduct has occurred. The accused who is accused of misconduct shall be given the opportunity to comment in an appropriate manner. At his/her request, he/she shall be heard orally and may be assisted by a person of his/her confidence. Other persons to be heard may also call in a person of their confidence as an advisor.

(3) Disclosure of the name of the whistleblower(s) may become necessary if the accused cannot otherwise defend him/herself properly because, for example, the credibility and motives of the whistleblower(s) are relevant with regard to the allegation of possible misconduct. The investigative commission shall decide on the disclosure of the name at the request of the accused.
(4) If the investigating commission considers misconduct to be unproven, the proceedings shall be discontinued. If the investigating commission considers misconduct to be proven, it shall submit the result of its investigation to the university management with a proposal for further proceedings, also with regard to safeguarding the rights of others, for decision and further action, which may be, for example, of an employment law, university law, disciplinary law or other nature. 
(5) The main reasons which led to the discontinuation of the proceedings or to the forwarding of the case to the university management shall be communicated immediately in writing to the accused and the person providing the information as well as to the president.

to the President in writing without delay. 
(6) There is no internal appeal procedure against the decision of the investigative commission.
(7) At the end of a formal investigation procedure, the chairperson of the investigating commission identifies all those persons who are (were) involved in the case. He/she instructs the ombudspersons to identify all those persons, in particular junior scientists and students, who have been involved through no fault of their own in processes of scientific 

The aim is to provide advice to persons who have been implicated in misconduct with a view to safeguarding their personal and scientific integrity. In this context, reference shall again be made to the confidentiality to be maintained.

§ 26 Conclusion of the proceedings

(1) The university management shall decide at its due discretion whether scientific misconduct has been established with regard to the accused person and whether and which sanctions and measures shall be imposed on him/her. If the withdrawal of an academic degree is considered as a measure, the offices responsible for this shall be involved.
(2) The files of the formal investigation shall be kept for 30 years. 
(3) The persons named in connection with a case of academic misconduct shall be entitled to have the ombudspersons issue them a notice (exonerating them) within the retention period upon request.
(4) In particularly justified cases, the university management may publish the result of the investigation commission upon request of the accused person(s). The existence of a justified case shall be decided by the investigating commission.

(5) Persons who give an indication of suspected scientific misconduct must not suffer any disadvantages for their own scientific and professional advancement as a result. The ombudspersons as well as the members of the investigative commission reviewing a suspicion, and the university management, shall be committed to this protection in an appropriate manner.

§ Section 27 Possible Sanctions and Measures

(1) If the university management considers academic misconduct to be proven, it may, within the bounds of proportionality, impose the following sanctions and/or take the following measures alternatively or cumulatively:
(a) Requiring the accused person to retract or correct incriminated publications or to refrain from publishing incriminated manuscripts,
b) Withdraw funding decisions or rescind funding contracts, if the decision was made by the university or the contract was entered into by the university, including, if appropriate, a recoupment of funds, 

c) Exclusion from serving as an expert or committee member of the university for a limited period of time.
d) Against employees of the university: warning under labor law, ordinary termination, termination of contract, extraordinary termination,
e) Against civil servants of the university: initiation of disciplinary proceedings under civil service law with the measures provided for therein, including interim measures,
f) Criminal complaint to the police or the public prosecutor's office,
g) Reporting a misdemeanor to the competent authority,
h) assertion of claims under civil law - also by way of interim legal protection -, in particular for damages, restitution or removal/stoppage,
i) Assertion of any claims under public law, also by way of interim legal protection,
j)     initiation of proceedings for the withdrawal of an academic degree or suggestion of the initiation of such proceedings.
(2) Sanctions and measures other than those referred to in paragraph 1 may be imposed only if they are proportionate to the legal interests and legitimate interests of the accused person.

§ Section 28 Transitional Provisions 

(1) The acts of scientific misconduct under Section 21 shall apply only to acts committed when this Statute was already in force.
(2) The procedural provisions of this section shall apply only to information received after the entry into force of this Statute. Preliminary investigation, preliminary examination and investigation proceedings already in progress when this Statute came into force shall be completed in accordance with the procedural provisions previously in force.

Section IV: Entry into force

§ Section 29 Entry into force

These bylaws shall enter into force on May 2, 2023 and shall replace the directive of June 1, 2016.

Issued on the basis of the resolution of the Senate of the Neu-Ulm University of Applied Sciences of 28.03.2023 and the approval by the President of 18.04.2023.

Neu-Ulm, 18.04.2023

Prof. Dr. Uta M. Feser
University of Applied Sciences Neu-Ulm

Resignation: 18.04.2023
Date of announcement: 18.04.2023