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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

The Ethics Trapeze (Papers: Will C. van den Hoonaard 2006)0

Posted by Admin in on March 22, 2016

Abstract: This article constitutes the introduction to a collection of essays in volume 4 of JAE, representing an extremely diverse collection of pieces written by authors from equally diverse backgrounds with the purpose of sharing the theoretical and practical issues related to research-ethics, or on ethics more generally. All of the articles are fresh contributions to the research-ethics review debate. The 17 authors of the 12 articles come from the United States, South Africa, and Canada. Their disciplinary or research backgrounds include Aboriginal literatures, English literature, English-as-a Second-Language pedagogy, French literature, history, language and literacy, liberal arts, and linguistics – all fields in the cluster of the humanities. The volume also has contributions from social work, sociology, and speech pathology. The world of research-ethics review has become so pervasive that it invades all areas of research: it does not respect disciplinary boundaries. The articles in this special volume represent, in short, a microscope of the research world.

Key words: ethics in research humanities and ethics research-ethics review

van den Hoonaard, Will C (2006) The Ethics Trapeze. Journal of Academic Ethics. 4(1) pp 1-10

Human research ethics committees: Beyond critique to participation (Papers: Simon Batterbury 2014)0

Posted by Admin in on March 21, 2016

Excerpt: There is frequent criticism by social scientists of Human Research Ethics Committees (HREC). They are accused of ‘ethics creep’, having expanded from their earliest focus in the medical and veterinary sciences following a 1974 ruling in the USA (1985 in Australia) (Haggerty 2004; Dyer and Demeritt 2009). Ethics committees now review any university research involving human ‘subjects’ (Borenstein 2008). Dissatisfaction about the practice of ethics review is especially strong in anthropology, where it is often hard to specify in advance what will be done in a given project and participants are often already known to the researcher (Cowlishaw 2013). Ethnography’s ‘. . .immersive and exploratory nature’ is difficult to predict or constrain in advance of fieldwork (Chenhall et al. 2011: 17). Researchers dislike being forced by their institutions, which may be running scared of lawsuits or costly insurance claims for projects-gone-wrong, to justify and specify their work (Cowlishaw 2013).

Batterbury S (2014) Human research ethics committees: Beyond critique to participation. The Australian Journal of Anthropology 25 (3): 385-386
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Consent and confidentiality in the light of recent demands for data sharing (Papers: Garrath Williams and Iris Pigeot )0

Posted by Admin in on March 20, 2016

Abstract: Many attempts have been made to formalize ethical requirements for research. Among the most prominent mechanisms are informed consent requirements and data protection regimes. These mechanisms, however, sometimes appear as obstacles to research. In this opinion paper, we critically discuss conventional approaches to research ethics that emphasize consent and data protection. Several recent debates have highlighted other important ethical issues and underlined the need for greater openness in order to uphold the integrity of health-related research. Some of these measures, such as the sharing of individual-level data, pose problems for standard understandings of consent and privacy. Here, we argue that these interpretations tend to be overdemanding: They do not really protect research subjects and they hinder the research process. Accordingly, we suggest another way of framing these requirements. Individual consent must be situated alongside the wider distribution of knowledge created when the actions, commitments, and procedures of researchers and their institutions are opened to scrutiny. And instead of simply emphasizing privacy or data protection, we should understand confidentiality as a principle that facilitates the sharing of information while upholding important safeguards. Consent and confidentiality belong to a broader set of safeguards and procedures to uphold the integrity of the research process.

Keywords: Data protection; Ethical review; Informed consent; Privacy; Research ethics; Trustworthiness

Williams G & Pigeot I (2016) Consent and confidentiality in the light of recent demands for data sharing. Biometrical Journal. doi: 10.1002/bimj.201500044

The Seduction of Ethics: Transforming the Social Sciences (Books: Will C. van den Hoonaard 2011)0

Posted by Admin in on March 19, 2016

Abstract: Formal research-ethics committees in Canada now function as an industry, costing over thirty-five million dollars annually. The Seduction of Ethics argues that while ethics codes are alluring to the public, they fuel moral panic and increase demands for institutional accountability. Will C. van den Hoonaard explores the research-ethics review process itself by analysing the moral cosmology and practices of ethics committees regarding research and researchers.

Listed by Hill Times as one of the top 100 Canadian non-fiction books in 2011.
Nominated for three awards, 2012. Received “Honorable Mention” by the Charles H. Cooley Award Committee of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction, 2012. (Reviewed four times):
Review in 2014: Symbolic Interaction 37 (2): 327-330.
Review in 2013: American J of Sociology 118 (4): 1136-1138; Transnational Legal Theory 4 (1): 146-156.
Review in 2012: Contemporary Sociology 41 (5): 678-679.

van den Hoonaard, Will C (2011) The Seduction of Ethics: Transforming the Social Sciences. Toronto: U of Toronto Press. ISBN 9781442642683