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Institutional Review Board and International Field Research in Conflict Zones

  • Srobana Bhattacharya (a1)
Abstract

Research on political conflict can benefit immensely from fieldwork. However, the Institutional Review Board (IRB) process is elaborate and daunting that discourages rather than encourages this type of research. Existing policies often are insensitive to the many uncertainties related to field research abroad, especially in conflict zones. Three reasons for this are identified in this article. First, the federal regulations to protect human subjects of social science research are most suitable for biomedical sciences. Second, there is huge gap between “procedural ethics” and “ethics in practice.” Third, there is a lack of communication or dialogue between researchers and IRBs. After discussing these reasons, I offer the following suggestions: bridging the gap between the researcher and the IRB; reducing delays in the IRB approval and revision process; encouraging collaboration and dialogue among researchers; and advocating a proactive stance by academic associations.

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References
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PS: Political Science & Politics
  • ISSN: 1049-0965
  • EISSN: 1537-5935
  • URL: /core/journals/ps-political-science-and-politics
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