The Scientific Integrity Policy requires the following annual activities:
- Scientific Integrity Committee Quarterly Meetings
- Agency-wide Annual Meeting Webinar
- Stakeholder Meetings
- Certification of Compliance with the Scientific Integrity Policy
- Ongoing Training and Outreach
Evaluation of the Scientific Integrity Policy
The Scientific Integrity Policy requires that the Scientific Integrity Committee review the Policy every two years to ensure its effectiveness and adherence with applicable rules and regulations. In 2014, the Committee began a formal evaluation of the Policy including a systematic investigation of the merit, worth, and significance of the Agency's efforts to implement the Policy.
The evaluation, which will extend into Fiscal Year 2016, will examine the content, implementation, and impacts of the Policy. It is designed to be a practical, ongoing assessment that involves the Scientific Integrity Committee and other stakeholders. The evaluation process will identify criteria to assess performance, standards that must be reached to consider the program successful, and evidence needed to indicate performance relative to standards. A logic model will synthesize the main program elements into a picture of how the program is supposed to work and make explicit the sequence of events that are presumed to bring about change.
Policy on Differing Scientific Opinions
EPA is developing a mechanism for Agency employees to express differing scientific opinions. This would apply to situations where an Agency scientist substantively engaged in the science informing an Agency policy decision disagrees with the scientific data, scientific interpretations, or scientific conclusions that will be relied upon for that Agency decision.
Clearance Best Practices
The Scientific Integrity Policy charged the Scientific Integrity Committee with developing an Agency-wide framework for the approval of scientific products. These best practices are the first step in the development by each office, program, and region at EPA of clearance procedures that are transparent, clear, timely, predictable, and consistent.