According to the National Science Foundation (http://www.nsf.gov/oig/resmisreg.pdf):
Research misconduct means fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing or performing research funded by NSF, reviewing research proposals submitted to NSF, or in reporting research results funded by NSF.
- Fabrication means making up data or results and recording or reporting them.
- Falsification means manipulating research materials, equipment, or processes, or changing or omitting data or results such that the research is not accurately represented in the research record.
- Plagiarism means the appropriation of another person’s ideas, processes, results or words without giving appropriate credit. Research, for purposes of paragraph of this section, includes proposals submitted to NSF in all fields of science, engineering, mathematics, and education and results from such proposals. Research misconduct does not include honest error or differences of opinion.