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  1. Office of the Chief Scientist

Office of Scientific Integrity


Major Functions

  • OSI works with the Centers and the Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA) to preserve and promote integrity in scientific decision-making, as well as consistency on such issues across the agency.  OSI identifies the need for additional policies and procedures through the work of its Office of the Ombudsman and the Office of Appeals.  The office also collaborates with representatives from the Office of Science and Technology Policy at the White House and other agencies to implement government-wide requirements and initiatives designed to ensure scientific integrity.
  • Through its Office of Appeals (OA), OSI coordinates for the Office of the Commissioner all requests for hearings in matters for which the FD&C Act or FDA’s regulations require an opportunity for a hearing (see, e.g., 21 CFR parts 12 and 16).  OA also works with the Chief Scientist (and sometimes other decision-makers) to resolve requests to review decisions made by the Centers or ORA, as submitted by interested persons outside the agency (see 21 CFR 10.75).
  • Through its Office of the Ombudsman, OSI investigates and facilitates resolution of informal complaints and disagreements elevated from lower levels of the agency by working with the parties to the dispute, which may include both internal and external constituents.  The Office of the Ombudsman further works, under tight deadlines, with various agency components to address complaints forwarded to the agency by the Small Business Administration.
  • The Agency Intramural Research Integrity Officer (AIRIO) is housed in OSI (see Staff Manual Guide (SMG) 9003.1 (“Policy for Responding to Allegations of Research Misconduct”).  The AIRIO receives and assesses incoming allegations to determine whether they constitute research misconduct under the regulations (i.e., falsification, fabrication, or plagiarism), refers the allegations to a board of inquiry as appropriate, coordinates both the inquiry and investigative boards, and communicates the conclusions of the investigation to the Office of Research Integrity, as appropriate.
  • OSI convenes the process review board (the Board) for all internal scientific disputes elevated to the Office of the Commissioner under SMG 9010.1 (“Scientific Dispute Resolution at FDA”) and works with the Chief Scientist (as Chair) and the Board to make a recommendation to the Commissioner as to how the dispute should be resolved.

 

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