Operational Committee for the assesment of Legal and Ethical risks

Changed on 13/01/2020

The Operational Committee for the Evaluation of Legal and Ethical Risks (OCELER) was set up in 2011 to respond to legal and ethical issues raised in the research and experiments carried out by Inria project teams. This is particularly relevant for research into cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, image analysis, robotics, human-computer interaction and any other research involving human beings. The OCELER is also responsible for questions of scientific integrity within Inria. Its president is Sylvain Petitjean.

S. Petitjean
© Inria / Photo C. Morel

Commitment

At a time when digital science is very much central to the transformation of our society and with the increasingly prominent legal and ethical issues raised by new forms of digital technology, Inria is reaffirming its commitment to honest, responsible research.

Inria was previously a signatory to both the European Charter for Researchers (2005) and the French Charter for Ethics in Research (2015).

The institute has also made commitments in the context of its HRS4R (2019) label, the aim of which is to raise awareness among personnel of questions relating to ethics and research integrity.

Role

The OCELER is the Inria body responsible for overseeing the implementation of its legal and ethical policy, as well as questions relating to research integrity. The OCELER:

  • advises Inria's CEO on whether or not to authorise research or experiments in which legal or ethical questions are raised or which could implicate the organisation or personnel involved in the work, including in a legal context.
  • will support these research projects and experiments by issuing technical prescriptions, where applicable. It will also be responsible for making decisions on the distribution of software programs, knowledge or data, in addition to decisions relating to ethical issues for research projects, whether collaborative or individual (ERC, etc.).
  • will play an advisory role with project teams, helping them to keep a handle on any potential legal or ethical risks. It will strive to ensure that all personnel contributing to research projects are made aware of the possible ethical impact of their research and the end results. It will supervise efforts made by the institute in relation to awareness-raising and ethics training, efforts that will eventually enable scientists to anticipate ethical issues raised either by their peers or by society.
  • Will foster an environment that is conducive to honest science, putting forward procedures for prevention and raising awareness of research integrity, and outlining a procedure for responding to incidents where a lack of research integrity has been shown (plagiarism, fabrication, falsification, etc.) in line with best practice in this area. The research integrity champion will collate information on alleged breaches of integrity, with support from members of the OCELER and external experts.

Members

The OCELER is made up of 14 members

  • 8 Inria personnel or individuals contributing towards Inria projects, including one representative from the legal affairs department.
  • 6 external individuals, including at least one individual with legal competence in digital science and technology.

The OCELER has two permanent guests:

  • The data protection officer (DPO).
  • The head of information systems security (HISS).

Each member of the OCELER will be appointed for a period of three years by Inria’s CEO. The OCELER will also draw on a network of legal and scientific correspondents within each of the institute’s 8 research centres.

Lastly, the OCELER may seek advice from as many experts as it deems fit in response to a given problem.

    His members

    Members - Staff contributing to Inria's missions

    Members - Independent personalities