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Iphofen, R. (2020). Key Topics in Research Ethics. In R. Iphofen (Ed.), Handbook of Research Ethics and Scientific Integrity. Springer Nature Switzerland AG. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76040-7_53-1


There are several issues that arise both in the research ethics review process and in the research field itself whose coverage is usually regarded as obligatory. No major reference work could be considered complete without some direct discussion of them. How obtaining consent is conducted and subjects/participants are informed of a research purpose is seen as central to ensuring valid participation. Privacy has grown in importance but as information technology has changed it is harder to maintain. In any case it may run counter to concerns for the safety and security of subjects and participants. The availability of and access to new data forms and technological developments expands the research field immeasurably, further complicating overlaps between private and public spaces. Confidentiality, anonymity, and the potential for deception in research all show how difficult it is to maintain these issues as conceptually distinct. This chapter raises some of the conceptual difficulties in the overlapping and, at times, conflicting application of key principles and values which are discussed at length in Section 2 of this Handbook.