The ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies is committed to the key principles of scientific research including honesty, accountability, rigour and integrity in all aspects of research, and the promotion of respectful, equitable and inclusive research practices. The Code of Conduct has been formulated to provide a clear statement of the expectations of Centre members in respect of their professional and personal conduct, and outlines procedures for potential breaches of the code. You can access the Centre’s Code of Conduct (including appendices) here and below.
The Centre is also committed to improving gender equity and diversity and the promotion and retention of women across our four nodes. To achieve this commitment, the Centre endorsed a policy in 2017 to codify the multiple actions we use to support, encourage and facilitate gender equity and diversity. You can access the Centre’s Gender Equity policy here.
Members of the Centre have formed a Justice Equity Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) Committee to further promote and works towards equity, diversity and inclusion. You can find out more about the JEDI Committee here.
ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies – Code of Conduct
The Code of Conduct applies to all Centre members, including staff, Chief Investigators, Partner Investigators, affiliates, visiting researchers, students and participants in Centre-led symposium, seminars and workshops. As the Centre is a collaboration of a number of Australian Universities and other organisations, the Code of Conduct of a Centre member’s university or organisation overrides this policy and must be deferred to if there is a conflict between the policies.
Personal and Professional Behaviour
In performing their duties and functions, all Centre members must aspire to:
- Exercise their best professional and ethical judgement and carry out their duties and functions with integrity and objectivity (Appendix 1);
- Adhere to the Principles of Responsible Research Conduct (Appendix 2);
- Act fairly and reasonably, and treat colleagues, students and visitors to the Centre and members of the public with respect, impartiality, courtesy and sensitivity;
- Avoid conflicts of interest;
- Share and communicate research methodology, data and findings promptly, openly, responsibly and accurately.
- Maintain a co‐operative and collaborative approach to working relationships; and
- Comply with all applicable legislation, industrial instruments, professional Codes of Conduct or practice and their own organisation’s policies, including in relation to:
- the conduct of research
- confidentiality and privacy of information
- equal opportunity
- health and safety policies and practices
- efficient and effective use of Centre resources
All Centre members are expected to not discriminate against anyone in connection with Centre activities on the grounds of individual characteristics including, but not limited to: age, diversity of sex, sexuality and gender, religion, Indigenous status, non-English speaking background, race, disability, mental and physical health, pregnancy, parenting and other responsibilities related to care of dependents.
Symposium, Seminars and Workshops
At the beginning of a symposium, seminar or workshop hosted in Australia and sponsored or organized by the Centre, an appropriate Acknowledgement of Country should be provided. Participants should also be made aware that their behavior during the symposium, seminar or workshop must adhere to the Centre’s Code of Conduct. Example statement for a seminar at James Cook University Bebegu Yumpa (Townsville) campus:
“I acknowledge that this meeting is being hosted on the traditional lands of the Bindal people, and pay my respect to Elders both past and present. Our expectation is that interactions during seminars are constructive and that all attendees behave with respect and consideration for others in accordance with the Centre’s Code of Conduct.”
The Centre is committed to making all Centre sponsored and supported symposia, seminars and workshops productive and enjoyable for everyone. We do not tolerate discrimination or harassment of participants in any form. In attending any Conference or Workshop, Centre participants are expected to:
- Behave professionally. Harassment and sexist, racist, or otherwise exclusionary comments or jokes are not appropriate. Harassment includes sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, sexual attention or innuendo, deliberate intimidation, stalking, and photography or recording of an individual without consent. It also includes offensive comments related to gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, nationality, race or religion.
- All communication should be appropriate for a professional audience including people of many different backgrounds. Sexually-explicit and offensive language and imagery in presentations is not appropriate.
Participants asked to stop any inappropriate behaviour are expected to comply immediately. Attendees violating these rules may be asked to leave the event at the sole discretion of the organisers without a refund of any fee.
You are welcome to engage with the Centre and your colleagues through social media, provided that your communications are respectful, appropriate for a professional audience, and adhere to the Code of Conduct. If you have questions or criticisms about a colleague’s research or presentation, we strongly encourage you to communicate that directly to your colleague rather than via social media. We also encourage you to only post things on social media about other people, which you would be comfortable saying to them in person.
The Centre is committed to the FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable, reusable) and CARE (collective benefit, authority to control, responsibility, ethics) Principles for scientific and Indigenous data management and stewardship. To achieve this, all Centre members must comply with the Centre’s Digital Data Management Policy and the research codes of conduct, ethics requirements and data management policies and procedures of their institution. The Centre’s policy supports the expectations articulated in The Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research (2018) that: the results of publicly funded research activities should be made widely available; and sharing and communication of research methodology, data and findings is done openly, responsibly and accurately. The focus of the Centre’s Data Management Policy is on digital research data, but much of the information can also be applied to non-digital data.
Conflicts of Interest
All Centre members must comply with their organisation’s policy regarding Conflict of Interest.
All Centre members must ensure that there is no actual, potential or perceived conflict between their personal interests or their duties to other parties and their duties and responsibilities as members of the Centre.
All Centre members must promptly make full disclosure to the Centre Executive of all relevant facts and circumstances giving rise to an actual, potential or perceived conflict of interest and cooperate with the Centre to ensure that all appropriate steps are taken to eliminate or manage such conflicts.
Gifts and Benefits
All Centre staff, students and affiliates must not solicit nor accept gifts or benefits, either for themselves or for another person, which may in any way, either directly or indirectly, compromise or influence them in their official Centre capacity.
All Centre members must report any offers of bribes to their supervisor, who should then ensure that the matter is reported as corrupt behaviour in accordance with your organisation’s code of conduct.
All Centre members who make public comments or representations and identify themselves as members of Centre must comply with this policy and their organisation’s Code of Conduct.
Use and Security of Official Information
All Centre members must:
- Maintain the integrity, confidentiality and privacy of Centre records and information to which they have access to in the course of their employment or study.
- Take all reasonable precautions to prevent unauthorised access to, or misuse of, Centre records and information.
- Comply with your organisation’s privacy and information policies.
All members must not:
- Disclose, or offer to supply, confidential or private Centre records or information, except when authorised to do so as part of their normal duties and functions, or when required or permitted to do so by their organisation’s policy, State or Commonwealth law, court order or other legal instrument.
- Access or use information, including information on electronic systems and hardcopy files, other than for an authorised purpose.
- Destroy, or authorise the destruction of, Centre records other than in accordance with your organisation’s policy and relevant legislation.
Work Health and Safety
All Centre members must comply with their organisation’s Work Health & Safety policies and procedures, and:
- Take reasonable care for their own health and safety and the health and safety of others who may be affected by their acts or omissions at work.
- Cooperate with the Centre and their organization to ensure compliance with all relevant health and safety laws.
- Consider and discuss potential risks of any new activities with the appropriate H&S officer prior to undertaking them.
Breaches of the Code of Conduct
What to do if you encounter misconduct?
Members of the Centre who encounter or observe professional or personal misconduct are encouraged to discuss, educate about, and/or report the issue. They can do this by contacting Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee members or reporting a violation to a meeting or workshop organizer, the Centre’s Chief Operating Officer (COO), Olga Bazaka or the Director, Graeme Cumming.
Response to breaches of the Code of Conduct
Individuals engaging in behaviour prohibited by this policy, as well as those making allegations of harassment in bad faith, will be subject to disciplinary action that may include verbal warnings, ejection from events without refund of registration fees, having membership of the Centre cancelled, and being banned from participating in any future Centre meetings or other activities. Decisions about disciplinary action, including reporting the matter to the appropriate body in the individual’s organisation, will be made by the Centre Executive (COO and Director).
Sexual harassment is unlawful under the Commonwealth Sex Discrimination Act 1984 and it constitutes misconduct. Should a Centre member or someone involved in a Centre-led activity be accused of sexual harassment, the Centre Executive (COO and Director) will take the appropriate action necessary including a decision to take the matter to the appropriate body in the individual’s organisation.
Below are some of our nodes’ policies around code of conduct, harassment and dispute resolution, which members may find useful:
James Cook University
JCU Safety and Wellbeing https://www.jcu.edu.au/safety-and-wellbeing
Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research https://www.jcu.edu.au/policy/research-management/code-for-the-responsible-conduct-of-research
Staff Code of Conduct https://www.jcu.edu.au/policy/corporate-governance/code-of-conduct
Bullying, Discrimination, Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Policy and Procedure https://www.jcu.edu.au/policy/corporate-governance/bullying-discrimination-harassment-and-sexual-misconduct-policy-and-procedure
Social Media Policy https://www.jcu.edu.au/policy/corporate-governance/social-media-policy
Gender Equity at JCU https://www.jcu.edu.au/gender-equity-action-and-research/gender-equity
Students with Disabilities https://www.jcu.edu.au/policy/equity/students-with-disabilities
The Australian National University
Code of Conduct https://policies.anu.edu.au/ppl/document/ANUP_000388
Student Code of Conduct https://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/program-management/student-code-of-conduct
Prevention of discrimination, harassment and bullying https://policies.anu.edu.au/ppl/document/ANUP_000623
Conflict of interest and commitment https://policies.anu.edu.au/ppl/document/ANUP_000397
Staff grievance resolution https://policies.anu.edu.au/ppl/document/ANUP_000500
Athena SWAN https://services.anu.edu.au/human-resources/respect-inclusion/athena-swan
The University of Queensland
Code of Conduct https://ppl.app.uq.edu.au/content/1.50.01-code-conduct
Sexual Misconduct https://ppl.app.uq.edu.au/content/1.50.13-sexual-misconduct
Prevention of Sexual Harassment https://ppl.app.uq.edu.au/content/1.70.02-prevention-sexual-harassment
Equity and Diversity Policy https://ppl.app.uq.edu.au/content/1.70.01-equity-and-diversity
Prevention of Racism Policy https://ppl.app.uq.edu.au/content/1.70.03-racism
Staff Grievance Resolution https://ppl.app.uq.edu.au/content/5.70.08-staff-grievance-resolution
Student Grievance Resolution https://ppl.app.uq.edu.au/content/3.60.02-student-grievance-resolution
The SAGE Athena SWAN Program https://about.uq.edu.au/initiatives/sage-athena-swan
The University of Western Australia
Code of Conduct https://www.uwa.edu.au/policy/home#Code
Gender Equity https://www.web.uwa.edu.au/inclusion-diversity/gender
This Code of Conduct is based on the Code of Conduct for the ARC Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions (ASTRO 3D), ARC Centre of Excellence for Engineered Quantum Systems (EQUS) and ARC Centre of Excellence for Gravitational Wave Discovery (OzGrav).