Principles of Scientific Investigation

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INTERNATIONAL OCEAN DISCOVERY PROGRAM (IODP)

1. The International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) is an international research collaboration that addresses important questions in Earth, Ocean, Environmental and Life sciences based on drill cores, borehole imaging, observatory data, and related geophysical imaging obtained from beneath the ocean floor using specialized ocean-going drilling and research platforms.

 2. IODP collaboration is further elaborated in Memoranda of Understanding that establish partnerships between platform providers and nations that help to fund the research platforms.

 3. IODP investigations are based on research proposals that address objectives described in the program’s guiding document, the IODP Science Plan Illuminating Earth's Past, Present, and Future, or other outstanding new research ideas.

 4. IODP proposals are reviewed by advisory panels composed of international representatives. The panels provide independent advice to IODP platform operators on science quality, feasibility, safety, and environmental issues. IODP proposals for scientific ocean drilling, including workshop proposals, are evaluated in a fair and unbiased manner that avoids conflicts of interests. The advisory panels are overseen by the JOIDES Resolution Facility Board but serve all IODP drilling and research platforms.

 5. Decisions on the scheduling of expeditions are made by Facility Boards that provide operational and management oversight of the IODP drilling platforms (JOIDES Resolution Facility Board, Chikyu IODP Board, and ECORD Facility Board). Each Facility Board is the policy-making body for the drilling and research platform it oversees while the platform is engaged in IODP expeditions. Facility Boards strive toward common IODP procedures and policies where practical and within the limits of resource availability.

6. The intellectual property of any scientific proposal submitted to the program belongs to the proposal authors (proponents) until a proposal is scheduled for drilling as part of an IODP expedition. At that time, the program acquires the right to publish the proposal and conduct the science. Every effort will be made by the program to recognize the intellectual efforts of the proponents.

7. IODP expeditions will be undertaken by international teams of scientists selected by the platform operator in accordance with Memoranda of Understanding between the participating nations that fund the research platforms. Staffing decisions will, as far as possible, take into account the intellectual contributions made by the original proponents and the goal of achieving diversity within the science party.

 8. IODP expeditions are intended to have no significant environmental impact and are carried out in conformance with the highest accepted levels of environmental sensitivity as further explained in the IODP Environmental Principles.

 9. IODP policies, procedures, recommendations, and minutes of meetings are openly available to the public within the limits of the program’s confidentiality policies for proposals, samples, and data.

10. IODP will provide open access to all expedition samples and data once the members of the expedition science party have had a reasonable opportunity to complete their initial studies within an established moratorium period (typically one year).

11. After the expiration of the data moratorium, the program will publish a detailed account of all findings, core and borehole details, data acquired during the expedition, and make all samples and cores (working halves) available to any scientist with a sound scientific proposal and proven facilities to conduct the proposed science in accordance with the IODP Sample, Data, and Obligations Policy.