May 26, 2010

My data are collected from very vulnerable populations. How can I prevent these data from being used to portray them in an injurious way?

It is the policy of ICPSR that responsible science, which includes appropriate analytic methods and peer reviewed venues for research results, is adequate to protect vulnerable populations from inappropriate, unfair, and inaccurate portrayals. In order to participate in a valid scientific discussion of the issues that face vulnerable populations, researchers must be willing to share their data and methods in an ethically responsible manner with other researchers who wish to replicate or refute their findings. One must be willing to trust the peer review process to screen out analyses that do not conform to methods appropriate to the question at hand. ICPSR is strongly committed to protecting vulnerable individuals from being identified by data analyses, but the scientific process must be used to protect vulnerable populations from inaccurate representations.