Ethics Task Force – Draft Principle: Protect and Preserve Your Records

4 thoughts on “Ethics Task Force – Draft Principle: Protect and Preserve Your Records”

  1. Destruction of the data would be an alternative consistent with the proposed code —

    “Do no harm

    Anthropologists share a primary ethical obligation to avoid doing harm to the lives, communities or environments they study or that may be impacted by their work. This includes not only the avoidance of direct and immediate harm but implies an obligation to weigh carefully the future consequences and impacts of an anthropologist’s work on others. This primary obligation can supersede the goal of seeking new knowledge and can lead to decisions not to undertake or to discontinue a project. Avoidance of harm is a primary ethical obligation, but determining harms and their avoidance in any given situation may be complex.”

    Where is the assurance and whose burden is it to safeguard the information?

  2. Being faced with the issue raised here, I can accept these as an advisory about what some of the issue might be. However, it is not very helpful as an “ethical” principle unless the Association or its representative is prepared to facilitate the transfer and acceptance of responsibility for the materials.

    Who, where, and how is such a transfer to take place, especial for those of us who have had a combined career in academia and practice?

    If the material has value to the profession, then the profession, through its institutional structure, needs to take some responsibility for setting up a systematic process for contacting to owners, collecting, and maintaining these materials

    The U of K’s applied archive is an example of one approach, albeit how effective it is in contacting and collecting the materials from practitioners is another question. The Human Relations Area Files is another model.

  3. On occasions where anthropologists collaborate closely with research participants, a possible model of shared ownership might be developed. Shared ownership might extend the collaborative relationship to certain rights and benefits for others besides the individual antrhopologist. This would apply to all phases of research or applications of anthropological work.

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