Scroll down for videos and summaries of past panels
April 18, 2022: The Ethics of Publishing - The Funding Conundrum
In the summer of 2021, The American Journal of Health Behaviour published a special issue sponsored by an e-cigarette manufacturer in which a tobacco company had a minority stake. The journal came under fire from anti-smoking charities and academics for accepting this funding. This case raises important and more general questions about what are the appropriate and “right” funding sources for academic literature. Are there funding sources that should always be rejected/accepted?
Ruth Malone (Professor, Social and Behavioral Sciences, University of California, San Francisco; Editor-in-Chief, Tobacco Control)
Michelle Johnson-Motoyama (Associate Professor, College of Social Work, Ohio State University; Co-Editor, Children and Youth Services Review)
April 4, 2022: Power Dynamics in Research
Relationships between researchers and participants are often marked by deep power imbalances. Rather than try to avoid power dynamics, researchers much learn how to address them in equitable ways. How should researchers navigate the research process to engage participants and treat them as equal partners? What do researchers do to work towards research aims and output that are both meaningful for participants as well as generalizable for the research community at large?
Roseann Liu (Assistant Professor, Education Studies, Wesleyan University; National Academy of Education, Spencer Postdoctoral Fellow)
Ayaz Hyder (Assistant Professor, Division of Environmental Health Sciences, College of Public Health, Core Faculty, Translational Data Analytics Institute, OSU)
Jodi Ford (Associate Professor, College of Nursing; Director, Stress Science Lab, OSU)
March 28, 2022: The Ethics of Informed Consent in Research
Informed consent is often understood as a pillar of ethical research. But the process is riddled with challenges and ambiguities. How informed do participants really need to be to give valid consent? Whose duty is it to make sure they truly understand what they are signing up for? What if there are pressures that make it difficult to say ‘no’? This panel will explore some of the ethical and practical challenges that researchers readily face.
Danielle Bromwich (Associate Professor, Philosophy Department, UMass Boston)
José Javier Otero (Associate Professor, Director of Neuropathology, OSU College of Medicine)
Jesse Strickler (Graduate Student Researcher, Nisonger Center, OSU)
January 31, 2022: The Ethics of Animal Research
A common complaint about unethical research is that people have been treated like guinea pigs. But how should researchers treat the guinea pigs? This interdisciplinary panel will discuss underlying questions and challenges related to the ethics of research conducted on animals.
Rebecca Walker (Professor of Philosophy and Professor of Social Medicine, University of North Carolina)
W. Scott McGraw (Professor, Chair, Department of Anthropology, OSU)
Rustin Moore (Dean, College of Veterinary Medicine, OSU; Ruth Stanton Chair in Veterinary Medicine)
December 6, 2021: The Ethics of Research with Immigrant Participants
This panel will discuss the unique challenges and opportunities that come up in researching immigrant communities. Immigrants may be vulnerable to research exploitation in a number of ways. How do we engage in research that matters to these communities but in a way that doesn’t expose people to further risk or harm?
Theresa Alfaro-Velcamp (Professor Emeritus, Department of History, Sonoma State University).
Leslie Moore (Associate Professor of Teaching & Learning and Linguistics, College of Education and Human Ecology, OSU)
Arati Maleku (Assistant Professor, College of Social Work, OSU)
November 15, 2021: How Should We Think About Research Misconduct?
Research misconduct is often understood as “fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism.” Recently, however, some have advocated to expand the definition to include behaviors such as sexual harassment, sabotage, and deceptive use of statistics. This panel will explore whether we should expand our understanding of the concept. We will discuss the distinctive harm of research misconduct and how we can safeguard against such behaviors in the research community.
David Resnik, J.D., Ph.D (Bioethicist, NIEHS).
Deborah S. Nichols Larsen, Ph.D, FAPTA, FASAHP (Director, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences; Associate Dean, College of Medicine; Associate Vice President, Health Sciences, OSU)
Michael Oglesbee, Ph.D, DVM (Director, Infectious Diseases Institute; Faculty Lead, Infectious Diseases Discovery Theme; Director, College Summer Research Program and Infectious Diseases Signature Program, OSU)
October 4, 2021: Ethical Challenges for Mentorship in Research
Mentorship across all career stages is a key way for individuals to do their part in developing, sustaining, and diversifying the research community. Ideally, the mentor-mentee relationship is mutually beneficial, promoting the careers and the research programs of both parties. But the relationship is also constitutively marked by power imbalances and vulnerabilities. This panel will explore how mentors and mentees can navigate the thorny ethical terrain of these important academic roles and what institutional supports can ensure inclusive and productive mentorship relationships.
- Katie Stinson, MLIS (Virtual Engagement Strategist, NRMN Resource Center)
- Abigail Norris Turner, PhD (Professor, Department of Internal Medicine, College of Medicine, OSU)
- Marcela Hernandez, PhD (Administrative Director, Office of Postdoctoral Affairs, OSU)
April 20, 2021: Minority Representation in Research
Adequate representation of diverse populations in research is a moral imperative as a matter of social justice, scientific integrity, and engendering public trust. There has been a recent push in the United States to increase the representation of minorities in clinical trials and social science research. This panel will gauge how we are doing, what challenges must still be addressed, and what strategies researchers can take to ensure study populations reflect real world demographics.
- Martin Mendoza, PhD (Director for the Division of Policy and Data, Office of Minority Health at the US Department of Health and Human Services)
- Arati Maleku, MSW, PhD (Assistant Professor, College of Social Work, OSU)
- Deena Chisolm, PhD (Director of the Center for Child Health Equity and Outcomes Research at the Abigail Wexner Research Institute, Nationwide Children's Hospital, and Associate Professor of Pediatrics, College of Medicine and Public Health, OSU)
March 16, 2021: The Ethics of Pediatric Research
Children are considered a vulnerable population and are granted extra legal protections. This is due in part to a history of exploitative research practices and the general view that while adults can assume the risks of research following their own altruistic values, we should not expect children to take on extra risks primarily for the benefit of others. At the same time, research with minors is of critical importance to advance knowledge about how to safeguard their wellbeing, educational opportunities, and health. This panel investigates the distinctive challenges that come when researching children, including the ethics of consent, risk, and parental involvement.
- David Wendler, MA, PhD (Head, Section on Research Ethics, Department of Bioethics, Clinical Center National Institutes of Health)
- Mollie Blackburn, PhD (Professor, Department of Teaching and Learning, College of Education and Human Ecology, OSU)
- Mark W. Hall, MD, FCCM (Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Division of Critical Care Medicine, Nationwide Children’s Hospital and OSU College of Medicine)
February 16, 2021: The Ethics of Research with Gender and Sexual Minorities
In 2016, the NIH designated gender and sexual minorities an official health disparity population. This is a welcome change that increases research attention and possible funding opportunities to work with LGBTQI communities. However more research opportunities does not necessarily translate to better research. This panel will discuss the distinctive challenges of research concerning gender and sexual minorities, including the risks of research fatigue, prioritization of research, stigma, trust, and community empowerment.
- Florence Ashley (SJD Candidate, University of Toronto Faculty of Law )
- Julia Applegate (Director, Equitas Health)
- Julianna Nemeth (Assistant Professor, College of Public Health, OSU)
January 19, 2021: The Ethics of Public Policy Research
Governments, scholars, and NGOs are increasingly making use of field experiments to accurately assess the effectiveness of policy interventions. For example, researchers at OSU are currently studying the effectiveness of COVID-19 testing policies in select communities across Ohio and others are studying the integration of prevention and overdose treatment in select communities hard hit by the opioid crisis. Research ethics is often focused on the clinical context and it leaves many ethical questions unanswered related to public policy research. In this panel, we will start the conversation on a number of questions related to consent, risk assessment, and duties owed to communities participating in these studies.
- Douglas MacKay (Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Center for Bioethics, UNC Chapel Hill)
- Pamela Salsberry (Professor Emeritus, College of Public Health, OSU)
- Stephanie Moulton (Associate Professor, John Glenn College of Public Affairs, OSU)
November 17, 2020: Corporate-Academic Partnerships in Research
There has long been discussion about the ethics of industry funded research. However, funding is not the only valuable resource that companies can offer academic researchers. There is also an enormous wealth of data being collected which has great potential to be studied for the purposes of understanding and addressing today's social and public health challenges, but which may be inaccessible due to consumer privacy, trade secrets, and proprietary matters. What are the ethics of corporate-academic collaborations when it comes to the pooling of these resources? In this panel we will discuss the challenges and possibilities of structuring these research partnerships with the aim of protecting privacy and promoting data stewardship, social value, research integrity, and public trust.
- Daniel Goroff (Vice President and Program Director at the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and Division Director for Social and Economic Sciences at the NSF)
- Caroline S. Wagner (Milton & Roslyn Wolf Chair in International Affairs, John Glenn School of Public Affairs, OSU)
October 20, 2020: The Ethics of DIY Science and Citizen Science
While the effort to develop a COVID-19 vaccine is happening at unprecedented speed, it is not happening fast enough for some. Motivated by the idea that "exceptional times demand exceptional actions," there is a growing movement amongst professional and "citizen" scientists to participate in D.I.Y. vaccine trials. Are these sorts of experiments a way to democratize science or are they just imposing unnecessary harm to participants and the general population? Do these trials even constitute human subjects research? And if so, can they be ethically justified?
- Anna Wexler, PhD (Assistant Professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, University of Pennsylvania)
- Lisa Rassmussen, PhD (Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of North Carolina, Charlotte)
September 22, 2020: Self Advocacy and Research Involving Psychosocial and Intellectual Disabilities
"Nothing About Us Without Us" is a common rally cry for how research related to psychosocial and intellectual disability should be conducted. But how can this sentiment be operationalized when it comes to research design and implementation? And what mechanisms must be in place to support meaningful self-advocacy from the disability community? This panel will ask these questions featuring Sam Crane, Legal Director at the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN), along with researchers from OSU and Nationwide Children's Hospital.
- Samantha Crane: member of Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee and the Director of Public Policy and Legal Director at the Autistic Self Advocacy Network.
- Megan Norris: Director of Research, Child Development Center; Licensed Psychologist, Nationwide Children’s Hospital; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Practice of Psychology, OSU
- Christa Teston: Andrea Lunsford Designated Professor for Rhetoric, Composition, and Literacy, English Department, OSU
September 1, 2020: The Ethics of Data Sharing in Research
In an era of Big Data and collaborative science, there has been a push for researchers, universities, and health systems to share their data. The massive datasets that result from sharing have the potential to unearth unique insights and make powerful predictions that will positively benefit human health and wellbeing. However, data sharing on a massive scale also introduces new ethical risks – including threats to privacy, challenges for informed consent, the commodification of personal information, and undermining the public trust in research. In this panel we will discuss these risks as well as the role that universities like OSU should play in safeguarding individual rights and in equitably distributing the benefits and burdens of research.
- Kayte Spector-Bagdady (Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Chief of Research Ethics Service in the Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School)
- Timothy Huerta (Family and Community Medicine and Biomedical Informatics, OSUMC; Chief Research Information Officer (CRIO) College of Medicine and Wexner Medical Center)
- Amanda Rinehart (Life Sciences Librarian, University Libraries)
- Efthimios Parasidis (Moritz College of Law and the College of Public Health, OSU; Professor of Law and Public Health)
June 9, 2020 - The Ethics of Research and Prisons
COVID-19 has raised awareness about the precarious health situation of prisoners and others in detention facilities. Recently, Ohio has seen a surge of confirmed COVID-19 cases in prisons and in one prison, the Marion Correctional Institution, nearly eighty percent of inmates have tested positive for the virus. What ethical challenges face researchers trying to study prison populations especially in light of their status as a vulnerable population who have been exploited and involuntarily experimented upon by medical researchers and whose susceptibility to the disease is the result of poor institutional conditions? How can we balance respect for human rights while ensuring that prisoners are not excluded from scientific progress. Join us for an interdisciplinary discussion with experts in Epidemiology, Criminology, and Law.
Maria Khan (Associate Professor, Department of Population Health, New York University)
Karamet Reiter (Associate Professor, Criminology, Law & Society, School of Law, UC Irvine)
Michael Para (Professor Emeritus, Infectious Diseases, OSU College of Medicine)
A variety of clinical trials have been initiated at warp speed to establish evidence around treatment of COVID-19, identifying a vaccine candidate, and understanding immunity to the disease. This panel will discuss how research should be conducted ethically and how healthcare professionals, regulators, and the general public should make use of the evidence as it trickles in. Some of the questions we will focus on: Should criteria for trial participation be altered due to the urgency of the pandemic? Should challenge trials, which recruit healthy volunteers and expose them to the virus, be permitted given the lack of treatment options? What are the ethical responsibilities of physicians to patients requesting experimental or unproven treatments for COVID-19?
Alex John London (Clara L. West Professor of Ethics and Philosophy, Carnegie Mellon University)
Patricia J. Zettler (Assistant Professor of Law at The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law and a member of Ohio State’s Drug Enforcement and Policy Center and Comprehensive Cancer Center)
Dónal O’Mathúna (Associate Professor, College of Nursing, Helene Fuld Health Trust National Institute for Evidence-based Practice in Nursing and Healthcare)
Cancelled: April 21, 2020 - Ethics of AI in Research
Pomerene Hall 320, 12p-1:30p
- Alex John London (Clara L. West Professor of ethics and Philosophy, Director fo the Center for Ethics and Policy, and Director of the Ethics History and Public Policy Program, Carnegie Mellon University)
Cancelled: March 17, 2020 - Ethics of Data Sharing in Research
Thompson Library 165, 10a-11:30a
- Kayte Spector-Bagdady (Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Chief of Research Ethics Service in the Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School)
February 18, 2020 - Genomics Research with Indigenous Communities
Recently, genomic research has allowed us to take great strides in predicting disease susceptibility and optimizing treatments. However, Indigenous peoples, including American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians, remain underrepresented and understudied in genetic and clinical health research and so are less likely to benefit from these important advances. Given past violations of research ethics, lack of community engagement and transparency, many members of indigenous communities are unwilling to share personal health information, including DNA, with the research community. How should researchers approach these communities in ways that build trust, foster collaboration, and support equitable outcomes?
The Center for Ethics and Human Values' CARE program is co-sponsored by the Office of Research with support from the OSUMC Center for Bioethics and the College of Public Health.
- Katrina Claw (Division of Biomedical Informatics and Personalized Medicine, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus)
Mathew Anderson (Department of Microbiology, OSU)
Daniel Rivers (Department of History, Director of American Indian Studies, OSU)
January 28, 2020 - The Ethics of Community Engaged Research
There has been a recent push for community engaged research, particularly when the research is conducted across cultural, structural and economic differences. In this panel we will examine what exactly ought to count as engaging a community as a research partner. What constitutes a community in the first place? Can individual representatives be recruited to speak for the community? If so, who? How do our common research practices and norms – such as informed consent and authorship - change when we engage the community? How do we measure the success of a projects’ community engagement?
- Charles Weijer (Professor; Canada Research Chair in Bioethics, Western University)
- Susan Melsop (School of Architecture, OSU)
- Abigail Shoben (College of Public Health, OSU)
When it comes to conducting international research, there are distinctive ethical challenges that researchers must confront given the global reach of their work. Securing host country approval and adhering to regulatory oversight are important, but they do not ensure community buy-in on the ground or that researchers are designing their studies in a manner that is sensitive to and respectful of local practices. In this CARE panel, we will explore some recent cases where researchers had to navigate complex ethical terrain in the course of their field work.
- Lauren Taylor (Harvard Business School)
- Roxanna Sierra Hernandez (Byrd Polar Research Center, OSU)
- Jeffrey Cohen (Anthropology, OSU)
It is common practice to offer payment to research subjects, either to enhance recruitment or to enable people to participate without financial sacrifice. While common, the practice is highly contentious. Some worry that paying subjects unduly influences their choice to participate, by impairing their judgment or by giving them an offer they cannot refuse. Others argue that we do not pay research participants enough, making participation for research overly burdensome for some already marginalized populations. This panel will debate these concerns. Questions that will be discussed include the following: Is it ever wrong to offer money for research participation? Is some payment too much or too little? What alternatives to monetary compensation are appropriate? Who should decide how much research subjects get paid?
- Govind Persad (Law, Univ. of Denver)
- Maria F. Gallo (College of Public Health, Division of Epidemiology, OSU)
- Amanda Robinson (Political Science, OSU)
Scholarship is rarely, if ever, a one-person job anymore. Co-authored papers are common in the sciences and are becoming more prominent in the humanities due to greater specialization, technological assistance in communication and data sharing, the emergence of funding for big collaborative projects, and increased institutional openness to interdisciplinary work. With increased opportunities and expectations for collaboration, researchers face many ethical conundrums in thinking about how to give everyone due credit for the work that they put in. This panel will address some of the most pressing issues in the ethics of joint authorship and collaboration. Topics will include how to navigate power imbalances in the authorship relationship, how to hold each other accountable, when one should refuse to co-author, and the differences between authorship, contribution, and mentorship.
- Haixin Dang (Research Fellow, Univ. Leeds)
- Susan Williams (English, OSU)
- Sandra Aya Enimil (Copyright Services Librarian, OSU Libraries)
- Katherine O'Brien (Museum of Biological Diversity, OSU)
- Cynthia Carnes (College of Pharmacy, OSU)
Many people go into research because of their deep moral commitment to some cause. Many researchers become deeply committed to some social causes as a result of their research. How does one balance their role as researcher and their role as advocate? This panel invited researchers who have engaged in advocacy related to racial justice, climate change, and HIV research. In this panel, we discussed how their research has informed and been informed by their work in advocacy and whether they have encountered tensions between these two roles.
- LaKisha Simmons (History and Women's Studies, Michigan)
- Jeremy Bruskotter (School of Environmental and Natural Resources, OSU)
- Jesse Kweik (Microbiology, OSU)
Disasters and conflicts lead to crises that call for humanitarian responses. How can we know that the type of response being provided is actually effective, timely, and the best use of the available resources? To answer these questions, there has been a recent drive for more research and other evidence-generating activities related to humanitarian aid. But research related to humanitarian aid often involve human participants and thus raise ethical issues of their own. This CARE panel discussed the distinctive challenges of conducting research during and after humanitarian crises. Among the questions discussed: How can such research avoid exploitation? What counts as good evidence of efficacy? What sort of risks can we expect research participants to sign up for? Is informed consent possible? Are there conditions under which research is not appropriate and the sole priority should be providing aid?
This panel was a session in the PREA International Conference on Ethics and Humanitarian Research.
- Veena Pillai (Dhi Consulting and Training, Malaysia)
- Erin Lin (Political Science, OSU)
- Marcel Yotebieng (Public Health, OSU)
According to one recent Nature survey, more than 70% of researchers have tried and failed to reproduce another scientist’s experiments, and more than half have failed to reproduce their own experiments. Some claim that these findings point to a “Crisis of Reproducibility” and it has caused alarm in a far ranging number of disciplines. But is there really any crisis at play and if so what are the ethical responsibilities of researchers and institutions in addressing this trend? This panel discussed the potential ethical implications for the lack of reproducibility in research results not only for the reliability of science but also for the safety of research subjects.
- Chris Chartier (Psychology, Ashland University; Director, Psychological Science Accelerator)
- Phillip Popovich (Neuroscience, OSU)
- Duane Wegener (Psychology, OSU)
A New York Times/Pro Publica investigation recently exposed dozens of leading medical figures who have failed to report their financial relationships with pharmaceutical and health care companies when their studies are published in medical journals. This has resulted in high profile resignations from leading medical research centers and investigations into the policies of leading journals. In this inaugural panel we will discuss the nature of this pressing problem and how it can best be addressed. Some questions that we will discuss: How should we address the danger of conflicts of interest? Is disclosure enough? Given the nature of these ethical abuses, is the term 'conflict-of-interest' the appropriate term? Is it too bland? Failure to disclose conflicts of interest is a breach of public trust, but is there any evidence that COIs actually have any effect on research outcomes? Do professional and institutional bodies overemphasize the dangers of financial COIs without attending to the prevalence of non-financial conflicts of interest?
- Matthew McCoy (Medical Ethics and Health Policy, UPenn)
- Dr. Clark Anderson, MD (Professor Emeritus, Division of Rheumatology and Immunology, OSU)
- Christopher Hadad (Chemistry & Biochemistry, OSU)
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