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Vision and Policies

Toxicology is the study of the adverse effects of chemical, physical, or biological agents on living organisms and the ecosystem, including the prevention and amelioration of such adverse effects.

Founded in 1961, the Society of Toxicology (SOT) is a professional and scholarly organization of scientists from academic institutions, government, and industry representing the great variety of scientists who practice toxicology in the US and abroad. The Society’s mission is to create a safer and healthier world by advancing the science and increasing the impact of toxicology.

SOT is committed to research that advances the mission to create a safer and healthier world. Fundamental to this commitment are the principles that:

  1. knowledge of mechanisms/modes of action underlying toxicity is critical for incorporation of sound science into risk assessment;
  2. dose-response relationships and consideration of exposure conditions are essential aspects of risk assessment; and
  3. research should be judged on the basis of scientific merit without regard for the source of funding or sector in which studies are conducted.

SOT operates under the guiding principles of:

  • Serving the needs of the scientific discipline and our members to enhance human, animal, and environmental health
  • Life-long learning and intellectual scientific stimulation
  • Diversity of representation in all activities of the Society
  • Integrity

SOT is committed to diversity and inclusiveness in all of its activities. We assert that diversity and inclusiveness include many factors, such as gender, race/ethnicity, employment sector, nationality, geographic location, physical ability, and scientific expertise and perspective. Embracing diversity and optimizing inclusion maximizes the range of creativity and innovation in our Society and our science.

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Code of Ethics

Adopted by the Society of Toxicology on January 31, 1985; Revised June 1, 2005; Reviewed and Reaffirmed September 14, 2011; Revised November 5, 2012

The Society of Toxicology is dedicated to developing and communicating knowledge to improve the health and safety of living beings and to protect the environment upon which we depend.

To attain this objective, each Member must maintain high ethical standards, recognize a duty to share this knowledge with the public, and be a thoughtful advocate for human, animal, and environmental health. To this purpose, this code requires a personal commitment.

Society of Toxicology Members Shall:

  • Conduct their work with objectivity and themselves with integrity. Being honest and truthful in reporting and communicating their research.
  • Hold as inviolate that credible science is fundamental to all toxicological research and is the basis for communicating results.
  • Recognize a duty to communicate information concerning health, safety, and toxicity in a timely and responsible manner, with due regard for the significance and credibility of the available data.
  • Give due consideration to the ethical, legal, social, and policy implications of their research and communications.
  • Be a thoughtful advocate for human, animal, and environmental health.
  • Abstain from professional judgments influenced by undisclosed conflict of interest, disclose any material conflicts of interest, and avoid situations that imply a conflict of interest.
  • Observe the spirit, as well as the letter of laws, regulations, and ethical standards with regard to the conduct of human and animal research.
  • Practice high standards of environmental and occupational health, and safety for the benefit of themselves, their co-workers, their families, their communities, and society as a whole.
  • Provide equal opportunity and equal consideration to all members without regard to sex, gender identity or expression, race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion or religious belief, age, marital status, sexual orientation, disabilities, or veteran status.

Concerns regarding ethics violations should be communicated in writing to SOT Headquarters. All questions of ethical concerns will be referred to the Societys legal counsel for review and recommendation to Council.

At the present time, Council can take action in response to objections only when those objections or comments are accompanied by specific references to findings of record as published by adjudicative bodies and when those findings cast serious doubt on prospective members respect for and conformity to the standards of professional conduct commonly accepted by toxicologists.

SOT mandates that all Councilors complete a conflict of interest disclosure form.

Conflict of Interest

The Society of Toxicology is committed to creating a safer and healthier world by advancing the science of toxicology. In seeking to do this, it is important that neither SOT nor its members be compromised by any significant conflict of interest (COI). In general, a COI arises when an organization or individual has a conflict between competing primary and secondary interests. The Society has a number of documents and forms regarding COI for its members Council, scientific presentations, and journal, the links to which are listed below.

Constitution & Bylaws
SOT’s founders drafted the first set of Bylaws and the Constitution in March 1962. Since 1962, the Constitution and Bylaws have been amended numerous times.

Go to: SOT Constitution and Bylaws

Policies & Procedures
The Society’s governing body, SOT Council, is entrusted with the authority to establish policy for the governance of the Society. These policies and procedures include how to form committees, groups, and other entitities; how to conduct meetings and events; SOT’s financial strategies; and more.

Go to: The complete list of SOT Policy & Procedures documents

Strategic Plan
SOT leadership has adopted a strategic plan designed to enhance the core functions of the Society—providing forums for scientific exchange, member services, and education—in ways that are consistent with SOT’s vision, mission, and guiding values.

Go to: The SOT Strategic Plan