An area of longstanding interest for EGAP is research ethics associated with interventions in field-based research contexts. EGAP researchers are often called upon to comment on the ethics of particular studies, but standards have not been agreed upon nor does EGAP have a formal framework to judge, for example, exactly which types of studies it would not fund or support. EGAP views this as an important area for elaboration given that most of the research that takes place through the EGAP network is interventionist in nature — that is, it seeks to generate real-world impact in terms of political, economic, and social processes.
Work on Ethics
EGAP seeks to offer an additional set of rigorous guidelines and mechanisms for addressing the complex ethical considerations that arise for researchers involved in interventionist field experimental studies.
In 2019, EGAP offered comments and suggestions on the Report of APSA Ad-Hoc Committee on Human Subjects Research. This was in response to the APSA Executive Committee requesting feedback from members of the social science community on proposed changes to the APSA Guide to Professional Ethics, Rights, and Freedoms, Section H.
The EGAP ethics memo is the culmination of several months of work that included the formation of an EGAP Ethics Committee (comprised of David Nickerson, Melina Platas, Amanda Robinson, and Tolga Sinmazdemir); a session discussing the APSA report with members that attended the EGAP 27 Geneva Meeting; and a call for comments from the wider network of EGAP members.