New! The Research Ethics Library

An introduction to research ethics

Our aim is for the library to serve as a resource for academic institutions by providing an introduction to the main issues in research ethics. Rather than presenting an encyclopedia or a set of answers, we aim to encourage debate and reflection.

The Research Ethics Library's main target groups are academic teachers and students, but the library is used by a broader public as well.

Each article serves as an introduction to a topic, but also offers suggested further reading and links to other resources. Case study exercises in English will be coming soon.

- The articles are structured within the library's three main sections:

  1. An introduction to research ethics
  2. Relevant research ethics issues, such as scientific misconduct, authorship, research on vulnerable groups, human material, research and society, research and environment, bias, gender, etc.
  3. Practical information, such as relevant research ethics bodies, legislation and guidelines.

A uniquely broad approach

Research ethics, broadly defined, consists of three main areas: (1) Norms dealing with good scientific practice and the relationship between researchers; (2) norms related to the relationship to those directly affected by the research; and (3)
norms related to the wider responsibility to society.

Since its launch in 2009, the library has become a widely used resource, frequently visited and linked to by all Norwegian universities, university colleges, as well as research institutes and government bodies. We are now launching an English-language version of the library. The library is unique in an international context, and we hope that an English version may serve as a resource for research ethics education worldwide.

The Norwegian National Research Ethics Committes

The Norwegian National Research Ethics Committees are independent agencies for questions regarding research ethics, and investigation of misconduct, within all subject areas.

Our tasks are to:

  • promote good-quality, ethically acceptable research
  • advise researchers and authorities on questions of research ethics
  • work to make research ethics principles better known
  • encourage debate
  • develop guidelines for research ethics
  • prevent misconduct
  • inform the general public about research ethics