ACN - 101321555 Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)
Search
Generic filters
Exact text matches only
Search into
Filter by Categories
Research integrity
Filter by Categories
Human Research Ethics

Resource Library

Research Ethics MonthlyAbout Us

ResourcesResearcher responsibilities

Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

Exempting low-risk health and medical research from ethics reviews: comparing Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States and the Netherlands (Papers: Anna Mae Scott, et al | January 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on April 1, 2020
 

Abstract

Background
Disproportionate regulation of health and medical research contributes to research waste. Better understanding of exemptions of research from ethics review in different jurisdictions may help to guide modification of review processes and reduce research waste. Our aim was to identify examples of low-risk human health and medical research exempt from ethics reviews in Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States and the Netherlands.

Methods
We examined documents providing national guidance on research ethics in each country, including those authored by the National Health and Medical Research Council (Australia), National Health Service (United Kingdom), the Office for Human Research Protections (United States) and the Central Committee on Research Involving Humans (the Netherlands). Examples and types of research projects exempt from ethics reviews were identified, and similar examples and types were grouped together.

Results
Nine categories of research were exempt from ethics reviews across the four countries; these were existing data or specimen, questionnaire or survey, interview, post-marketing study, evaluation of public benefit or service programme, randomised controlled trials, research with staff in their professional role, audit and service evaluation, and other exemptions. Existing non-identifiable data and specimens were exempt in all countries. Four categories – evaluation of public benefit or service programme, randomised controlled trials, research with staff in their professional role, and audit and service evaluation – were exempted by one country each. The remaining categories were exempted by two or three countries.

Conclusions
Examples and types of research exempt from research ethics reviews varied considerably. Given the considerable costs and burdens on researchers and ethics committees, it would be worthwhile to develop and provide clearer guidance on exemptions, illustrated with examples, with transparent underpinning rationales.

Scott, A.M., Kolstoe, S., Ploem, M.C., Hammatt, Z. & Glasziou, P.  (2020) Exempting low-risk health and medical research from ethics reviews: comparing Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States and the Netherlands. Health Research Policy and Systems. 18(11). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12961-019-0520-4
Publisher (Open Access): https://health-policy-systems.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12961-019-0520-4

Australian junior scientists report damaging lack of support at work – Nature (Chris Woolston | March 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on March 31, 2020
 

System built on short-term contracts and grants causes many to consider leaving.

Four out of five early-career researchers in Australia have considered leaving science or their jobs because of factors including questionable research practices and an absence of institutional support, suggests a survey of 658 postdocs and junior faculty members.

What does your institution do to support early career researchers?  This story suggests Australian institutions aren’t doing enough

The study was led by Katherine Christian, a social scientist at Federation University Australia in Ballarat, who is collecting data for her PhD thesis on the challenges faced by early-career researchers in the country. “I found everything I expected, but more so,” she says.
.

The national survey ran online from March to June 2019; it targeted people who had earned a PhD or equivalent degree within the past ten years and were working at research institutions or universities in science, technology, engineering, mathematics or medicine. The results were posted on the preprint server bioRxiv last month (K. Christian et al. Preprint at bioRxiv http://doi.org/dn8m; 2020).
.

Read the rest of this discussion piece

“I was shocked. I felt physically ill.” And still, she corrected the record – Retraction Watch (Adam Marcus | March 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on March 30, 2020
 

Two years ago, Julia Strand, an assistant professor of psychology at Carleton College, published a paper in Psychonomic Bulletin & Review about how people strain to listen in crowded spaces (think: when they’re doing the opposite of social distancing).

Finding a mistake in your lauded research can be devastating.  But as this case demonstrates, responding well and publicly can enhance not damage your reputation.

The article, titled “Talking points: A modulating circle reduces listening effort without improving speech recognition,” was a young scientist’s fantasy — splashy, fascinating findings in a well-known journal — and, according to Strand, it gave her fledgling career a jolt.
.

The data were “gorgeous,” she said, initially replicable and well-received:
.

‘We planned follow-up studies, started designing an app … for use in clinical settings, and I wrote and was awarded a National Institute of Health grant (my first!) to fund the work.”
.

Read the rest of this discussion piece

APA chief publishing officer: Ignore paper removal request – Eiko blog (January 2020)0

Posted by Admin in on March 28, 2020
 

On December 24th 2019, I received a legal threat by the American Psychological Association to remove one of my papers from my personal website. Similar requests have been received by other colleagues recently.

This paper highlights again the conflict between journals as commercial versus them being academic entities.

I appealed the request, and have now heard back from APA’s Chief Publishing Officer that I can ignore the request because “it is not intended to limit researchers in highlighting their works on their personal sites”. At least to me, this appears to constitute a radical change of policy with pretty sweeping implications for psychological researchers, and I therefore describe this issue in some detail below.
.

2017: APA starts the removal request initiative
To the best of my knowledge, the APA started this initiative in 2017, in emails had the same content and were sent by the same authority (see here for a 2017 example email received by a colleague at Princeton). As I discussed in a blog post about the broken publishing system before, APA additionally asked webhosters such as WordPress to force-edit researchers’ websites, leaving this image on the webpage…
.

Read the rest of this discussion piece

0