The advisers are appointed from among the faculties’ senior researchers by the academic councils. The task of the advisers is to provide other researchers, managers at the university or members of technical/administrative staff with confidential and objective advice and guidance on research integrity, freedom of research and the responsible conduct of research.
The advisers can either provide guidance themselves or refer employees to relevant units at the university that can provide information. Depending on what issues are at stake in the specific case – pressure on freedom of research or research conduct – advisers may recommend that efforts to resolve them be made in dialogue with the persons or institutions involved. In such situations, advisers can offer to assist when the case is discussed, and will contribute their independent and objective assessment of the situation.
As a general rule, sessions with the advisers are confidential. This means that the adviser may not disclose information to management or others without the permission of the person who approached the adviser. However, if an adviser receives information on a particularly serious breach of the responsible conduct of research, the adviser is obliged to report the case to the Committee for Responsible Conduct of Research and Freedom of Research – called the Research Practice Committee.