Fabrication of Substance in Proposal Falsification in Proposal/Progress Rpt

Published by the National Science Foundation, Office of Inspector General on 2017-02-08.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                                                  NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION
                                                   OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL
                                                     OFFICE OF INVESTIGATIONS

                                            CLOSEOUT MEMORANDUM

 Case Number: I-16-0015-O                                                                    Page 1 of 1

                 NSF OIG received an allegation of fabrication/falsification in NSF-funded work.1
         Specifically, it was alleged that a PI (Subject)2 did not report to NSF problems with data
         management until her final project report, and that the PI reported longitudinal findings in her
         report that seemed questionable given the data management problems.

                  We contacted the Subject regarding the allegation. She explained that the project’s
         graduate assistants incorrectly assigned participants their ID numbers, which she did not realize
         until data analysis began following years of data collection. The assistants assured her they could
         fix the issue, but the problems persisted when she revisited the data. The Subject explained that
         the data was not corrupted, compromised or lost, and that she was able to employ a statistical
         method that social scientists commonly use to produce some results. She said she did not inform
         NSF of the problems until her final project report because the participant ID issue and its
         inability to be resolved were discovered at a late point in the project.

                 We determined the Subject did not falsify or fabricate the NSF-funded data, that the
         results she presented were produced using a scientifically valid method, and that she informed
         NSF of the problem in a relatively timely manner. Accordingly, this case is closed with no
         further action taken.



NSF OIG Form 2 (11/02)