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The ethical practice of social enquiry (Or, Never mind the question, let’s get the answer right)

Alan J. Scott, Independent researcher:  (Editor’s note: This is a revised version of an article first written in 1979. The questions it raises are still relevent today.) There is a group of words that are often used as if they have precise meanings, but in practice they overlap and are interwoven, to the extent that […]

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Ethical dilemmas of fieldwork in China

Elly Leung, University of Western Australia: In my PhD research ‘Exploring Worker Consciousness in China’ I am examining how the lived experience of everyday Chinese workers has influenced their willingness to improve their working and living conditions as a class for themselves and others in China. This research focus is justified by the explosion of […]

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Ethical treatment of human remains and relatives of the missing in Spain‬‬‬

Natalia Maystorovich Chulio, University of Sydney:  ‘Human remains are not just another artefact, they have potency, they are charged with political, evidentiary and emotional meanings…’ (Cassman et al., 2006:1). As the above quote reflects, human remains are never neutral; they are imbued with meaning. There is an expectation that those working in medico-legal forensic work […]

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Ethical dilemmas when working across disciplines

Eileen Clark, Clarks Clerks Research Services:  We might imagine that the ethical principles governing research are universal and clearly delineated, so that an action is either right or wrong with little room for doubt. However, my recent work has shown me that different disciplines may interpret the principles of beneficence, respect for human dignity, and […]

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