The Ethics of Visual Research and Participant Empowerment



The ethics of research is integral to all studies involving people and communities. However, studies involving photographs, or other visual representations, present a unique set of ethical considerations. Those considerations present themselves through legal standards, institutional and professional guidelines, as well as personal morals. This chapter explores the different levels of ethical decision-making visual researchers face in designing and implementing photo-elicitation studies, as well as the dissemination of findings. The first portion of the chapter describes the ethical obligations and challenges associated with gaining research approval through institutional ethics committees. The second portion of the chapter addresses the more complicated realm of ethical decision-making that relies on researchers’ personal principles aimed at protecting what is in the best interest of participants.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Illinois State UniversityNormalUSA

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