We have compiled peer-reviewed articles that address ethical issues in humanitarian research. If you would like to suggest articles that we should add, please feel welcome to send them to us. We’ve labelled the papers that are available open access (OA).
Ethics review and oversight of humanitarian research
Aarons, D. (2017). Research in epidemic and emergency situations: A model for collaboration and expediting ethics review in two Caribbean countries. Developing world bioethics.
Alirol, E., Kuesel, A. C., Guraiib, M. M., de la Fuente-Núñez, V., Saxena, A., & Gomes, M. F. (2017). Ethics review of studies during public health emergencies-the experience of the WHO ethics review committee during the Ebola virus disease epidemic. BMC medical ethics, 18(1), 43. (OA)
O’Mathúna, D. (2012). Roles and challenges with IRBs with disaster research. Research Practitioner, 13, 167-174.
Packenham, J. P., Rosselli, R. T., Ramsey, S. K., Taylor, H. A., Fothergill, A., Slutsman, J., & Miller, A. (2017). Conducting Science in Disasters: Recommendations from the NIEHS Working Group for Special IRB Considerations in the Review of Disaster Related Research. Environmental health perspectives, 125(9), e094503-e094503.
Perlman, D. (2008). Public health practice vs research: implications for preparedness and disaster research review by State Health Department IRBs. Disaster medicine and public health preparedness, 2(3), 185-191.
Schopper, D., Ravinetto, R., Schwartz, L., Kamaara, E., Sheel, S., Segelid, M. J., … & Upshur, R. (2017). Research Ethics Governance in Times of Ebola. Public Health Ethics, 10(1), 49-61.
Schopper, D. (2014). Research ethics governance in disaster situations. In Disaster bioethics: Normative issues when nothing is normal (pp. 175-190). Springer Netherlands.
Schopper, D., Dawson, A., Upshur, R., Ahmad, A., Jesani, A., Ravinetto, R., … & Singh, J. (2015). Innovations in research ethics governance in humanitarian settings. BMC medical ethics, 16(1), 10. (OA)
Schopper, D., Upshur, R., Matthys, F., Singh, J. A., Bandewar, S. S., Ahmad, A., & van Dongen, E. (2009). Research ethics review in humanitarian contexts: the experience of the independent ethics review board of Médecins Sans Frontières. PLoS Medicine, 6(7), e1000115. (OA)
Siriwardhana, C. (2015). Rethinking vulnerability and research: defining the need for a post-research ethics audit. Asian Bioethics Review, 7(2), 188-200.
Ethical issues arising in disaster research
Ausbrooks, C. Y. B., Barrett, E. J., & Martinez-Cosio, M. (2009). Ethical issues in disaster research: Lessons from Hurricane Katrina. Population Research and Policy Review, 28(1), 93-106.
Benight, C. C., & McFarlane, A. C. (2007). Challenges for disaster research: recommendations for planning and implementing disaster mental health studies. Journal of Loss and Trauma, 12(5), 419-434.
Brun, C. (2009). A geographers’ imperative? Research and action in the aftermath of disaster. The Geographical Journal, 175(3), 196-207.
Chung, B., Jones, L., Campbell, L. X., Glover, H., Gelberg, L., & Chen, D. T. (2008). National recommendations for enhancing the conduct of ethical health research with human participants in post-disaster situations. Ethn Dis, 18(3), 378-83.
Collogan, L. K., Tuma, F., Dolan‐Sewell, R., Borja, S., & Fleischman, A. R. (2004). Ethical issues pertaining to research in the aftermath of disaster. Journal of traumatic stress, 17(5), 363-372.
Del Ben, K. S., McLeish, A. C., & Elkin, T. D. (2006). Research and ethics following a natural disaster: from the public’s point of view. BEHAVIOR THERAPIST, 29(6), 128.
Eckenwiler, L., Pringle, J., Boulanger, R., & Hunt, M. (2015). Real‐time Responsiveness for Ethics Oversight During Disaster Research. Bioethics, 29(9), 653-661.
Ferreria, R., Buttell, F., & Ferreria, S. (2015). Ethical considerations for conducting disaster research with vulnerable populations. Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics, 3, 379-384.
Hunt, M. R., Anderson, J. A., & Boulanger, R. F. (2012). Ethical implications of diversity in disaster research. American journal of disaster medicine, 7(3), 211-221.
Hunt, M., Tansey, C. M., Anderson, J., Boulanger, R. F., Eckenwiler, L., Pringle, J., & Schwartz, L. (2016). The challenge of timely, responsive and rigorous ethics review of disaster research: views of research ethics committee members. PLoS one, 11(6), e0157142. (OA)
Jesus, J. E., & Michael, G. E. (2009). Ethical considerations of research in disaster-stricken populations. Prehospital and disaster medicine, 24(2), 109-114.
Knoppers, B. M., Saginur, M., & Cash, H. (2006). Ethical issues in secondary uses of human biological materials from mass disasters. The Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics, 34(2), 352-365.
Levine, C. (2004). The concept of vulnerability in disaster research. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 17(5), 395-402.
Macklin, R. (2014). Studying vulnerable populations in the context of enhanced vulnerability. In Disaster bioethics: Normative issues when nothing is normal (pp. 159-173). Springer Netherlands.
Matsui, K., & Tashiro, S. (2014). Ethical challenges for the design and conduct of mega-biobanking from Great East Japan Earthquake victims. BMC medical ethics, 15(1), 55. (OA)
North, C. S., Pfefferbaum, B., & Tucker, P. (2002). Ethical and methodological issues in academic mental health research in populations affected by disasters: The Oklahoma City experience relevant to September 11, 2001. CNS spectrums, 7(8), 580-584.
Rosenstein, D. L. (2004). Decision-making capacity and disaster research. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 17(5), 373-381.
Sumathipala, A., & Siribaddana, S. (2005). Research and clinical ethics after the tsunami: Sri Lanka. The Lancet, 366(9495), 1418-1420.
Tansey, C. M., Anderson, J., Boulanger, R. F., Eckenwiler, L., Pringle, J., Schwartz, L., & Hunt, M. (2017). Familiar ethical issues amplified: how members of research ethics committees describe ethical distinctions between disaster and non-disaster research. BMC medical ethics, 18(1), 44. (OA)
Taylor, H. A. (2016). Review and Conduct of Human Subjects Research after a Natural or Man–Made Disaster: Findings from a Pilot Study. Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics, 6(3), 211-222.
Ethical issues arising in research during armed conflict or population displacement
Boyden, J. (2004). Anthropology under fire: Ethics, researchers and children in war. Children and youth on the front line: Ethnography, armed conflict and displacement, 237-258.
Chaitin, J. (2003). “I Wish he hadn’t Told Me that”: Methodological and Ethical Issues in Social Trauma and Conflict Research. Qualitative health research, 13(8), 1145-1154.
Chiumento, A., Khan, M. N., Rahman, A., & Frith, L. (2016). Managing Ethical Challenges to Mental Health Research in Post‐Conflict Settings. Developing world bioethics, 16(1), 15-28.
El-Khani, A., Ulph, F., Redmond, A. D., & Calam, R. (2013). Ethical issues in research into conflict and displacement. The Lancet, 382(9894), 764-765.
Fleischman, A. R., & Wood, E. B. (2002). Ethical issues in research involving victims of terror. Journal of Urban Health, 79(3), 315-321.
Ford, N., Mills, E. J., Zachariah, R., & Upshur, R. (2009). Ethics of conducting research in conflict settings. Conflict and health, 3(1), 7. (OA)
George, M. (2015). Ethical Lessons Learned from Conducting Refugee-Based Research in an Indian Refugee Camp. Journal of Human Rights Practice, 7(3), 451-465.
Goodhand, J. (2000). Research in conflict zones: ethics and accountability. Forced Migration Review, 8(4), 12-16.
Hill, P. (2004). Ethics and Health Systems Research in’Post’-Conflict Situations. Developing World Bioethics, 4(2), 139-153.
Jacobsen, K., & Landau, L. B. (2003). The dual imperative in refugee research: some methodological and ethical considerations in social science research on forced migration. Disasters, 27(3), 185-206.
Leaning, J. (2001). Ethics of research in refugee populations. The Lancet, 357(9266), 1432-1433.
Mackenzie, C., McDowell, C., & Pittaway, E. (2007). Beyond ‘do no harm’: The challenge of constructing ethical relationships in refugee research. Journal of Refugee studies, 20(2), 299-319.
National Research Council, & Committee on Population. (2002). Research ethics in complex humanitarian emergencies: Summary of a workshop. National Academies Press.
Siriwardhana, C., Adikari, A., Jayaweera, K., & Sumathipala, A. (2013). Ethical challenges in mental health research among internally displaced people: ethical theory and research implementation. BMC medical ethics, 14(1), 13. (OA)
Wood, E. J. (2006). The ethical challenges of field research in conflict zones. Qualitative Sociology, 29(3), 373-386.
Zwi, A. B., Grove, N. J., Mackenzie, C., Pittaway, E., Zion, D., Silove, D., & Tarantola, D. A. N. I. E. L. (2006). Placing ethics in the centre: Negotiating new spaces for ethical research in conflict situations. Global Public Health, 1(3), 264-277.
Ethical issues arising in research during public health emergencies
Calain, P., Fiore, N., Poncin, M., & Hurst, S. A. (2009). Research ethics and international epidemic response: the case of Ebola and Marburg hemorrhagic fevers. Public Health Ethics, 2(1), 7-29.
Edwards, S. J. (2013). Ethics of clinical science in a public health emergency: drug discovery at the bedside. The American Journal of Bioethics, 13(9), 3-14.
Ezeome, E. R., & Simon, C. (2010). Ethical problems in conducting research in acute epidemics: the Pfizer meningitis study in Nigeria as an illustration. Developing world bioethics, 10(1), 1-10.
Haire, B. G., & Folayan, M. O. (2016). Ebola “Ring” vaccine trial was ethically innovative. American journal of public health, 106(9), e1-e1.
Langat, P., Pisartchik, D., Silva, D., Bernard, C., Olsen, K., Smith, M., … & Upshur, R. (2011). Is there a duty to share? Ethics of sharing research data in the context of public health emergencies. Public Health Ethics, 4(1), 4-11.
Resnik, D. B., Miller, A. K., Kwok, R. K., Engel, L. S., & Sandler, D. P. (2015). Ethical issues in environmental health research related to public health emergencies: reflections on the GuLF STUDY. Environmental health perspectives, 123(9), A227.
Rid, A., & Emanuel, E. J. (2014). Ethical considerations of experimental interventions in the Ebola outbreak. The Lancet, 384(9957), 1896-1899.
Shaw, D., & Elger, B. S. (2016). Publication ethics in public health emergencies. Journal of Public Health, 1-3.
Smith, M. J., & Upshur, R. E. (2015). Ebola and learning lessons from moral failures: who cares about ethics?. Public Health Ethics, 8(3), 305-318.
Tansey, C. M., Herridge, M. S., Heslegrave, R. J., & Lavery, J. V. (2010). A framework for research ethics review during public emergencies. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 182(14), 1533-1537.
Ethical issues arising in research in multiple types of humanitarian crises
Mfutso-Bengo, J., Masiye, F., & Muula, A. (2008). Ethical challenges in conducting research in humanitarian crisis situations. Malawi Medical Journal, 20(2), 46-49.
O’Mathúna, D. (2015). Research ethics in the context of humanitarian emergencies. Journal of evidence-based medicine, 8(1), 31-35.
O’Mathuna, D., & Siriwardhana, C. (2017). Research ethics and evidence for humanitarian health. The Lancet. 390(10109), 2228-2229.
Pringle, J. D., & Cole, D. C. (2009). Health research in complex emergencies: A humanitarian imperative. Journal of Academic Ethics, 7(1-2), 115-123.
Van der Loos, K. I., Longstaff, H., Virani, A., & Illes, J. (2014). Consent in escrow. Journal of Law and the Biosciences, 2(1), 69-78.
Walker, P. H., Bibb, S. C. G., & Elberson, K. L. (2005). Research issues in preparedness for mass casualty events, disaster, war, and terrorism. Nursing Clinics, 40(3), 551-564.
Zachariah, R., Janssens, V., & Ford, N. (2006). Do Aid Agencies Have an Ethical Duty to Comply with Researchers? A Response to Rennie. Developing World Bioethics, 6(2), 78-80.
Guidance for ethical research
Black, R. (2003). Ethical codes in humanitarian emergencies: from practice to research?. Disasters, 27(2), 95-108.
Browne, K. E., & Peek, L. (2014). Beyond the IRB: An ethical toolkit for long-term disaster research. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 32(1), 82-120.
Chiumento, A., Rahman, A., Frith, L., Snider, L., & Tol, W. A. (2017). Ethical standards for mental health and psychosocial support research in emergencies: review of literature and current debates. Globalization and health, 13(1), 8. (OA)
Mezinska, S., Kakuk, P., Mijaljica, G., Waligóra, M., & O’Mathúna, D. P. (2016). Research in disaster settings: a systematic qualitative review of ethical guidelines. BMC medical ethics, 17(1), 62. (OA)
Sumathipala, A., Jafarey, A., De Castro, L. D., Ahmad, A., Marcer, D., Srinivasan, S., … & Waidyaratne, D. (2010). Ethical issues in post-disaster clinical interventions and research: A developing world perspective. Key findings from a drafting and consensus generation meeting of the Working Group on Disaster Research and Ethics (WGDRE) 2007. Asian Bioethics Review, 2(2), 124-142.