What is research ethics?
“Research ethics are all the ethical issues relating to research, both within
the academy and in relation to the public, and between researchers and
financiers and, of course, the relationship between researchers and what their
research is about - especially when these are humans or animals. Research is an
important power factor in society, and with power follows responsibility.
Therefore, research ethics are important.”
Why do you think a doctoral student should
attend this course?
“To learn to identify ethical problems that are relevant to their own research
and to the research area in which the doctoral student works.”
How will doctoral students be able to
use their knowledge from the course in their daily work?
”They will develop an enhanced ability to identify ethical problems,
identifying situations, not just facts, but also values that are relevant,
which is more often than we think within the academy. They will find that
values affect more of our different decisions and actions – even within the
knowledge- and fact-intensive everyday life of scientific work – than we
Which questions will be addressed in the
“Within technology research, questions arise about problems that may arise
around or because of the product or the object of the research. Can the result
be used destructively? Can the processes be used destructively? Key issues
within the academy are of course about plagiarism, for example, about senior
researchers who use student’s work as if they were their own. An interesting
ethical question is how we do when we disagree with method selection or
analysis. Not least, if the disagreement is simultaneously influenced by an
academic grade, for example, if a doctoral student is skeptical about his or
her supervisor's choice of method.”
Ethical research questions can vary
between different research areas - how do you handle such differences in inputs
to the subject in this course?
“The PhD students all work with their own research as the basis, and they are
tasked with finding articles that highlight research ethical issues that are
relevant in their own research. I assist in dealing with the ethical principles
and concepts, while the PhD students independently work together to apply these
principles and concepts based on their own knowledge of their own field of
What are the important future challenges
regarding research ethics?
“Within technology, it is to solve imminent environmental problems, preferably
without causing new ones. But I also believe that we need to be much better at
seeing how social science research and technology research needs to interact
with each other, and I think we have a lot to work to do with understanding
each other over the disciplinary boundaries. It is something that I think is
ethically committed to making the future less uncertain.”
More information about the course "Research Ethics in Science and Technology" and on how to register