Ethical and legal issues
Research data need to be legally and ethically shared, which includes obtaining informed consent from participants, implementing anonymisation and controlling access to data.
Ethical and legal standards
Ethical standard and guidance are provided by professional bodies, host institutions and funding organisations. It is expected for all researchers to employ a high level of ethical standards in preparing and implementing research. The researcher should be aware of the legal standards of data collecting and sharing applicable in our country.
One of the most shared ethical standards and requirements among researchers is informed consent from all participants in the study from whom data are collected and then analyzed. It is highly important to plan the provision of informed consent which will include information that data can be safely stored, shared and used afterward.
In order to be reposited in the data archive and to be shared with other researchers, data often need to be anonymised, meaning that participants in the research, such as individuals, organizations or companies cannot be identified.
Controlling access to sensitive data
We understand the need for the same data to be safeguarded effectively by regulating or controlling its access. There are different levels of access to data, and research should decide if the data will be available to all accredited researchers, only upon request, or only to members of the research team.
Researchers should be aware of the copyright in every stage of the scientific project which involves producing and analyzing data.
In order to archive and share data, researchers have to resolve any possible issue regarding copyrights, while data are archived only after all rights holders are identified and their permission is obtained for sharing the data. The copyrights are retained by the original owner after data are shared or archived, and it has to be acknowledged properly by any other data user.
For further reading, you might consider the following links:
As well as publications:
- American Psychological Association. (2002). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct. American Psychologist, 57(12)
- Sales, B.D., & Folkman, S. (Eds.). (2000). Ethics in research with human participants. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association
Inspired by: UK Data Archive (http://www.data-archive.ac.uk/create-manage/copyright/share and http://www.data-archive.ac.uk/create-manage/consent-ethics) and The American Psychological Association (http://www.apa.org/monitor/jan03/principles.aspx)
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