Ethical Considerations in Photography as a Research Method

  • Sten Langmann
  • David Pick


The aim of this chapter is to provide an overview of the ethical issues that social researchers might encounter when employing photographic methods. We begin with a discussion dignity as the main ethical foundation of research photography, followed by an examination of the related issues of power and consent. Particular attention is paid to working with vulnerable and groups. The chapter concludes with a discussion of anonymisation. This is particularly difficult problem faced by research photographers who must decide whether protecting the identity of research participants (for example, through pixilation of faces) could be a destruction of their identity thus creating harm in a different way. This chapter provides invaluable insights for social researchers grappling with the ethical dimensions of a research project.


Consent Anonymity Recognition Vulnerability Power Intervention 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Curtin UniversityPerthAustralia
  2. 2.Curtin Business SchoolPerthAustralia

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