Ethics of conducting research in conflict settings

Confl Health. 2009 Jul 10;3:7. doi: 10.1186/1752-1505-3-7.

Abstract

Humanitarian agencies are increasingly engaged in research in conflict and post-conflict settings. This is justified by the need to improve the quality of assistance provided in these settings and to collect evidence of the highest standard to inform advocacy and policy change. The instability of conflict-affected areas, and the heightened vulnerability of populations caught in conflict, calls for careful consideration of the research methods employed, the levels of evidence sought, and ethical requirements. Special attention needs to be placed on the feasibility and necessity of doing research in conflict-settings, and the harm-benefit ratio for potential research participants.