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Report on Postgraduate Ethics workshop

8 October 2009

The postgraduate ethics workshop took place at SSEES on 23 September 2009. Its main aim was to bring together academics and postgraduate research students within REES to exchange ideas and experiences relating to ethical issues. This workshop was divided into three sessions, designed to address three key themes: ethics and statistical data; ethical issues arising during fieldwork and ethical issues in an era of institutional paranoia.

Speakers were drawn from UK institutions, from a range of disciplines. Eleven papers were heard and discussed. Discussions were lively and postgraduate students were able to address ethical issues concerning their own research projects.

An important outcome of this workshop was that workshop participants felt that CEELBAS should continue organising workshops on methods and research ethics in area studies. The mentioning of a CEELBAS area methods virtual learning environment as well as a book on this topic was positively welcomed by all participants.

Speakers:

Prof Mark Harrison (Warwick), Statistics in the Service of Repression: Categories and Ethics

Dr Gary Pollock (Manchester), Ethics, Research Design and the Process of Analysis - A Multi Method Study with People from the South Caucasus

Richard Connolly (CREES), Managing and Analysing Statistical Data on Eastern Europe

Dr Adi Kuntsman (Manchester), Ethics and Politics of Researching Racism in Cyberspace

Sean Roberts (CREES), Russia as a “Managed Democracy”: The Influence of Context on the Research Process

Dr Anne White (Bath), Managing Expectations of Informants in Russia and Poland

Kathryn Cassidy (CREES), Carrying out Participant and Non-Participant Observation amongst Economically-Marginalised Groups in the Ukrainian-Romanian Borderlands

Dr Galina Yemelianova (CREES), The Study of post-Soviet Islam: Methodological and Ethical Challenges

Dr Alexander Titov (SSEES), Research Ethics and Russian Archives

Daniel Brett (SSEES), Some Reflections on Using the Romanian Securitate Archive