11. Code of Conduct

11. Code of Conduct

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln Department of Plant Pathology promotes discovery in the life sciences and the improvement of the human condition through innovative research, high-quality education, effective extension and public outreach, and mentorship. We work in a variety of settings and engage in multiple capacities on and off-campus. It is vital that all members of the department adhere to appropriate and acceptable conduct in all of their official capacities as representatives of Plant Pathology and UNL.

Our professional activities will empower the growth and the acquisition of new knowledge and skills for all members of the department and of those with whom we work and interact. We promote a Code of Conduct to provide a respectful and rewarding experience where all members of the department flourish and all learners are respected and encouraged.

11.1 Expected Personal Behaviors

Appropriate, positive behavior towards others acknowledges and values who they are and what they are doing, and this reflects on one's own character, integrity, and values. All students and personnel working in the department, in any of its activities in any capacity, will:

  • Treat everyone with respect and consideration, with sensitivity to personal and cultural concerns and differences.
  • Maintain respectful dialogue at all times to promote constructive discourse.
  • Evaluate the work of colleagues fairly and objectively.
  • Recognize past and present contributors to science and accomplishments of others.
  • Support the professional growth and success of others, especially when in a formal or informal mentoring role.

11.2 Prohibited Personal Behaviors

  • Harassment and intimidation, including verbal, written, or physical conduct that demeans, denigrates, threatens, intimidates, belittles, or coerces another person.
  • Discrimination or exclusion based on gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, age, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion, political perspective, national origin, or culture.
  • Physical, emotional, or verbal abuse of any person.
  • Plagiarism, stealing, or assuming credit for the accomplishments of others.

11.3 Reporting

If you see or experience prohibited or disrespectful behavior or language (unacceptable personal conduct), or if you witness unacceptable scientific conduct, if you feel that you are in a position to do so, please speak directly to the offender. You should also notify as appropriate either your direct supervisor, lab director, advisor, mentor, or the department head.

If you feel uncomfortable with a situation or behaviors/language of others, and would prefer not to report to one of the people listed above, you should contact the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance (https://www.unl.edu/equity/ or call 402-472-3417) as soon as possible after the situation occurs. You may submit your concerns to the Office of IEC using the online form - https://www.unl.edu/equity/Fillable%20Intake%202015.pdf. If the issue is more serious you may submit an anonymous report to the University of Nebraska Police at https://unlreport.unl.edu/. For critical emergencies, call 911 or 402-472-2222 (2-2222 from a campus phone).

Violations of the expected behaviors described above will necessitate meeting with departmental and possibly IANR leadership to develop a corrective action plan that will be strictly enforced and time-bound. Egregious violations of policies, repeat offenses, or failure to conform to corrective action plans will lead to dismissal and exclusion from the department’s premises.

11.4 Ownership of Research Data and Intellectual Property

Laboratory notebooks, research findings, and other research documents are the property of the University of Nebraska and the Faculty Advisor, and must be freely shared upon request from the Faculty Advisor. Labs are encouraged to develop shared online resources. Students must keep in mind that some research is proprietary and confidential; sharing with friends and other unauthorized personnel may be a violation of the agreement the mentor has with the funding entity. It is essential that the level of confidentiality be understood by all parties, since violation could result in the loss of funding.