Research with human subjects

Adventures in Ethics and Science

Category archives for Research with human subjects

You’ve probably heard that UCLA scientist Edythe London, whose house was earlier vandalized to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars by animal rights activists, has once again been targeted. This time an incendiary device was left on her front door. Abel and Mark weighed in on this appalling use of tactics to terrorize…

In an earlier post, I looked at a research study by Nelson et al. [1] on how the cognitive development of young abandoned children in Romania was affected by being raised in institutional versus foster care conditions. Specifically, I examined the explanation the researchers gave to argue that their work was not only scientifically sound…

“Why don’t they make a birth control pill for men?” There are important considerations from medical ethics that might explain why a birth control pill for men has not happened yet.

The Neurocritic alerted me, in a comment on an earlier post, to a pair of papers in the 21 December 2007 issue of Science that raise some difficult ethical questions about what sorts of research are permissible. Quoth the Neurocritic: This may be a little off-topic, but I was wondering if you read this article…

One of the strengths of science is its systematic approach to getting reliable information about the world by comparing outcomes of experiments where one parameter is varied while the others are held constant. This experimental approach comes satisfyingly close to letting us compare different ways the world could be — at least on many occasions.…

Last May, on my way back from a mini-conference in Stockholm, I had a long layover in Munich. Since major airports are now essentially shopping malls with parking for commercial jets, I used a little bit of that time to wander through a pretty impressive airport book store, where I picked up a copy of…

On this blog I occasionally note a major motion picture that is (tangentially) related to ethics in science, not to mention seeking your advice on my movie-viewing decisions (the votes are running 2 to 1 in favor of my watching Flash Gordon; if I do, I may have to live-blog it). Today, I’m going to…

I haven’t mentioned it here before, but I’m currently working on a project to launch an online dialogue at my university (using a weblog, of course) to engage different members of the campus community with the question of what they think the college experience here ought to be, and how we can make that happen.…

One of my students raised a really good question in class today, a question to which I do not know the answer — but maybe you do. We were discussing some of the Very Bad Experiments* that prompted current thinking** about what it is and is not ethically permissible to do with human subjects of…

I finally saw The Constant Gardener this weekend. If your aim is to conduct your drug trials ethically, do not conduct them like the drug trials portrayed in the movie. I could entertain questions on specific details, but the scenario is so black and white that I don’t imagine you’d have any.