Researchers working in conflict settings face a range of potential ethical risks, including access, insecurity, trauma, and concerns over data protection. Ensuring that research undergoes a relevant ethics review process is essential, but often challenging for studies occurring outside of an academic institution. In response, humanitarian organisations, NGOs and other non-academic entities are increasingly setting up their own ethics review boards (ERBs) or committees.
This panel will explore, through practical examples, how ERBs balance academic research standards and field realities and how they manage ethical dilemmas relating to research in conflict settings. The panel will focus on the practical aspects of establishing and implementing ethics review processes. and are looking for experiences of how the gap between academia and practitioners can be bridged.
How are ethics review processes established and pursued within humanitarian organisations? What ‘lessons learned’ would you like to share, as a researcher or as a board member? What are the main ethical issues you grapple with when conducting or reviewing research in conflict settings and how do you resolve them? Do you consider or emphasise local partnerships and in-country approvals when reviewing a study, and what does community representation look like on your ethics board?
We seek practical examples of the above, both successful and unsuccessful, focused on research conducted in conflict settings. We would like to hear about your solutions and ongoing dilemmas, what kinds of issues you prioritise and how you experience being ‘reviewer’ or ‘reviewed’.