Ethics & Integrity in Research

Attestation of Ethical Compliance for Research with Human Subjects and/or Data Derived from Human Subjects | Scientific integrity | Experiencing or Witnessing a Breach of Scientific Integrity | Lecture open to all the doctoral programs

Attestation of Ethical Compliance for Research with Human Subjects and/or Data Derived from Human Subjects

The former Ethics Committee of the Faculty of Business and Economics has been replaced with the Commission for Ethics in Research (CER-HEC). A more formalized and institutionalized structure, which became operational on 01.05.2022.

It is strongly recommended to submit to the CER-HEC any research project involving human participation, or utilizing personal and/or sensitive data.

Area of activity
The CER-HEC can examine any project whose research subject concerns human beings and falls outside the scope of the federal law on research on human beings (LRH), or when an attestation of ethical compliance is requested by the researcher or student.

Projects falling within the scope of the LRH are those using personal health-related data, or collecting or using human biological material. These projects must be submitted directly to the state commission for ethics in research (CER-VD).

Where an attestation of institutional ethical conformity is required (e.g., by the funding body), the CER-HEC issues a notice and transfers the complete file to the UNIL Rectorate, through the Office of the Research Ethics Commission of UNIL (CER-UNIL). The same applies to projects with very complex ethical issues and implications.

Practical information
The CER-HEC examines the ethical aspects of projects submitted to it by HEC researchers and issues certificates of ethical compliance.


Members of the CER-HEC

 Representantives of the faculty members

 Prof. Rustamdjan Hakimov

 Prof. Ulrich Hoffrage

 Prof. Mathias Humbert

 Prof. Franciska Krings

 Representantives of the intermediate body

 Marc-Olivier Boldi (MER)

 Liliane Keopraseuth (graduate assistant)

 Representantives of the Dean's Office  Carolyn Magnani (Substitute: Boris Nikolov)
 Representantives of the CER-HEC Office  Daniella Seguel Eduardo (Substitute: Giulia Svanascini)


Scientific integrity

Science is a key driver of progress and development for the well-being of people, society and the environment. In scientific research, integrity is a prime condition. It represents the basis of the credibility of science and also a justification for the demand for the independence of researchers. The University of Lausanne (UNIL) must ensure the integrity of its personnel. All UNIL employees and students involved with research should respect the general ethical principles:

  1. Contribute to society and to human well-being;
  2. Avoid harm;
  3. Be independent, honest, and trustworthy;
  4. Be fair and take action not to discriminate;
  5. Respect the work required to produce new ideas, inventions, creative works and artefacts;
  6. Respect privacy and honour confidentiality;

HEC Lausanne has created three bodies to ensure these principles are respected and to support and advice members of the faculty, personnel and students: the Commission for Ethics in Research, the Ombudsperson and the Delegate for Integrity. Each of these bodies addresses different situations, as further described here below.


Experiencing or Witnessing a Breach of Scientific Integrity

Office 1: Ombudsperson

If you need advices and you are unsure about whether your specific case constitutes a breach of scientific integrity, you can refer to the Ombudsperson. This office will provide confidential advice on your case. Anything discussed with this office will remain strictly confidential and will not be shared with other people or institutions. If your case warrants a breach of scientific integrity, you will be advised to report the case to the Delegate for Integrity.
The HEC Faculty Council elected Mauro Cherubini (e-mail: as the Ombudsperson in Fall 2021.


Office 2: Delegate for Integrity

If your case warrants a breach of scientific integrity, the Ombudsperson will advise you to report the case to the Delegate for Integrity. This office will investigate the case further, and prepare a report that will be sent to the Rectorate. The report can include propositions for further actions.

The HEC Faculty Council elected Valérie Junod (e-mail: as the Delegate, and Valérie Chavez (e-mail: as her Substitute, in Fall 2021.


More information on the process and research integrity at UNIL
A comprehensive description of research integrity is available (in French) from the Directive 4.2 of the University of Lausanne. The diagram below illustrates the process of a case that is denounced to the Delegate. The Ombudsperson is not involved in the investigation process, but provides advice even before the process starts.


Click on the image below to enlarge.

Lecture open to all the doctoral programs

Title: Good Research Practices and Research Ethics (GRP)
Credits: 3 ECTS
Teacher: Prof. Mauro Cherubini

Semester: Fall

Content overview and approach

The course will tackle three main areas of the contemporary debate on research excellence: research ethics, scientific integrity, and reproducibility. One of the aims of the instructors is to show how these topics are tightly interlinked. Another objective of this course is to provide students with practical tools and strategies to prevent experimental design mistakes, improve their scientific rigor, and conduct reproducible research.

The course will be taught using contrasting case studies: each core topic of the course will be presented through two case studies that reveal different facets of the same topic. Students will be asked to study the case studies, and prepare summaries highlighting the major ethical issues identified that will be presented and discussed.

More information here


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