Experiences of Ethics, Governance and Scientific Practice in Neuroscience Research

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Over the last decade or so, the instantiation of ethics as a form of governance within scientific practice – via, for instance, research ethics committees (RECs) – has been extensively interrogated. Social scientists have demonstrated the reciprocally constitutive nature of science and ethics, which renders problematic any assumption that ethics simply follows (or stifles) science in any straightforward way. This chapter draws on and contributes to such discussion through analysing the relationship between neuroscience and research ethics. I draw on data from six focus groups with scientists in the UK to reflect on how ethical questions and the requirements of RECs as a form of regulation are experienced within (neuro)science. In what follows, I explore issues that the neuroscientists I spoke with deem to be raised by their work, and characterise how both informal ideas about ethics and formal ethical governance (e.g. RECs) are experienced and linked to their research. In doing so, I demonstrate some of the lived realities of scientists who must necessarily grapple with the heterogenous forms of health-related research regulation the editors of this volume highlight in their introduction, while seeking to conduct research with epistemic and social value.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Cambridge Handbook of Health Research Regulation
PublisherCambridge University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9781108620024
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2021


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