Ethics and design research

It was excellent to welcome Jackie Malcolm to the Masters studio today to discuss ethics in research and design practice and to emphasise its central role. Within the University of Dundee we have a robust and rigorous process to ensure that ethical approval is gained prior to a project and that informed consent is gained. For us in design, this is most appropriately expressed through a code of practice for non-clinincal research ethics on human participants.

However, as a highly readable overview of ethics in research that includes useful practical advice, I would suggest referring to the research ethics and governance handbook produced by Northumbria University and available online. A clear explanation of informed consent on page 3 is followed by ‘informed consent and ethnography’ on the following page. Appendix 1 provides very useful guidance on producing an informed consent form


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