21.1 APS Statement on the International Nature of Science and International Scientific Cooperation

Science transcends national boundaries and international scientific partnerships are essential for breakthrough discoveries that advance science and benefit all people. Likewise, international scientific cooperation contributes to economic growth and fosters mutual understanding across political and ideological divisions—promoting peaceful relations among partnering nations.

The American Physical Society affirms its commitment to the following tenets:

  1. International scientific cooperation is critical to advance science, and ultimately improve the lives of everyone on the planet.
  2. Global competition and cooperation in science helps advance science, drive innovation, and benefit society. To the greatest extent possible, the products of fundamental research should remain unrestricted.
  3. Freedom of communication (including travel, electronic means of communication, and other means) for research discussions or for international conferences is essential to realize the full potential of the international scientific enterprise, both internationally and for each nation.
  4. Scientists who are studying or working outside their country of origin should feel welcomed and secure in their host country. They add great value through their presence and scientific contributions.
  5. International scientific cooperation is balanced with national economic and national security interests most effectively by an intensified commitment to research integrity by all scientists. The elements of research integrity include objectivity, honesty, openness, accountability, fairness, disclosure, and stewardship [1].
  6. Scientists engaged in international scientific collaborations must respect the relevant research protocols of those countries involved in the collaboration, along with the general principles of research integrity, such as objectivity, honesty, openness, accountability, fairness, disclosure, and stewardship.[1]
  7. Governments, research institutions, and professional societies are responsible for developing clear and well-communicated standards that define responsible research conduct, disseminating them to national scientists and international partners, and holding scientists accountable for adhering to these standards.

The APS will continue to take action in support of the human and professional rights of scientists in all countries. It continues to encourage scientists to take conscientious and responsible action to protect those rights and to further international scientific cooperation.

[1] Many of these principles are described in the National Academies Report Fostering Integrity in Research, NAP21896, National Academies (2017) https://www.nap.edu/catalog/21896/fostering-integrity-in-research

Adopted by the Council on September 23, 2021
Category: Human Rights

APS Statements

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