Tree-Ring Society

Tree-Ring Society

Code of Ethics

The purpose of this code is to provide principles to guide the professional conduct for all members of the Tree-Ring Society (TRS). Members of the TRS are expected to abide by the Code of Ethics and the companion Code of Conduct on Bullying, Harassment and Sexual Harassment.

The TRS is dedicated to dendrochronological research and education, wherein we: promote tree-ring research and career development for the global dendrochronology community; provide a forum for communication by supporting the regular organization of international conferences, workshops, and fieldweeks; publish peer-reviewed dendrochronological studies in the Society journal Tree-Ring Research; and disseminate knowledge about dendrochronology to other disciplines and to the public. 


The Code of Ethics is a set of principles and practices intended to guide professional behavior regarding the practice, learning, training, publishing, and communication of science, and governs all TRS members, staff, volunteers, and non-members participating in TRS-sponsored programs and activities. 

Professional misconduct includes discrimination, harassment, bullying, dishonesty, fraud, misrepresentation, coercive manipulation, censorship, or other misconduct that alters the content, veracity, or meaning of research findings or that may affect the planning, conduct, reporting, or application of science. This applies to all professional, research, and learning environments.

All members of the TRS shall observe the following Principles of Ethical Behavior in the conduct of their professional affairs, and will:

1.    adhere to the TRS Code of Conduct on Bullying, Harassment and Sexual Harassment Policy
2.    not discriminate against others, in the course of their work on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, marital status, creed, religion, race, color, national origin, age, economic status, disability, organizational affiliation, or other factors considered relevant by the TRS Executive Council
3.    not plagiarize in verbal or written communication but will provide credit to the works and ideas of others, and make every effort to avoid misrepresentation.
4.    not fabricate, falsify, or suppress results, deliberately misrepresent research findings, or otherwise commit scientific fraud
5.    not attempt to injure the reputation or professional opportunities of another scientist by false, biased, or undocumented claims
6.    not represent themselves as spokespersons for the TRS without express authorization by the TRS Executive Council
7.    conduct their research to avoid or minimize adverse environmental effects and in compliance with all legal requirements for a given study area

The following Principles of Ethical Behavior apply specifically to TRS members reviewing, editing, or publishing papers or articles in general, and particularly in the Society’s Tree-Ring Research journal, such that: 

1.     authorship of a paper will be claimed only by individuals who have made an intellectual contribution. Providing funding alone does not guarantee authorship. For example, authorship would be legitimately claimed if an individual contributes at least to one of the following:

a)    conceived the central ideas or experimental design

b)    participated actively in execution of the study

c)     analyzed and interpreted the data

d)    wrote the manuscript

2.     co-authorship will be granted only to contributors who have agreed to the content of the final version of the manuscript.

3.     research results will not be presented as new if they have already been published, nor will an author submit a manuscript while it is under review for possible publication elsewhere.

4.     when using ideas of others in manuscripts submitted for publication, individuals will provide full attribution of sources. Unpublished work of others should not be published without permission and acknowledgement of the original researcher.

5.     direct use of results, figures, or tables from other publications or manuscripts may be used only with permission of the copyright owner.

6.     editors and reviewers will treat manuscripts under review as confidential, recognizing them as intellectual property of the author(s).

7.     editors and reviewers will not purposefully delay publication of another person's manuscript nor recommend rejection to gain advantage over that person and/or team.

8.     individuals will not serve as editors or reviewers of a manuscript if present or past connections with the author or the author's institution may prevent objective evaluation of the work.

9.     authors will promptly report errors in research results or interpretations discovered after submission or publication to the editor of the journal. 

Consequences of breaching this policy

When behavior constituting a breach of the TRS Code of Ethics and/or the Code of Conduct on Bullying, Harassment and Sexual Harassment has been identified, immediate action will be taken. Such action includes, but is not restricted to: revocation of TRS membership, revocation of awards that have been conferred to individuals by the TRS, and temporary or permanent ban on submission of articles for publication in the Society’s journal. Action may also include removing the individual from his/her/their position, whether it be a Council member, contractor, or any other person affiliated with the TRS. Breaches in the TRS Code of Ethics and/or the Code of Conduct will be reported to the workplace, and/or institutional or law enforcement authorities as appropriate or legally required. 

The principles included in this Code of Ethics have been adapted from those of the Ecological of Society of America [Accessed online May 2020].


For questions or comments about the website or membership, contact Lori Wilson (trslori [at] gmail dot com. The Tree-Ring Society is a 501(c)3 non-profit association. 
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