Streamlining ethical review of data intensive research

David Townend, Edward S Dove, Dianne Nicol, Jasper Bovenberg, Bartha M Knoppers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Unfounded concerns about local liability should not delay urgent reform Research that crosses international borders and analyses large volumes of data from multiple sources is growing. Such data intensive research—for example, precision medicine studies driven by genomic research and DNA sequencing—creates difficult governance challenges, one of which is repetitive and inefficient ethical review. There is no clear evidence that review of the same study by multiple research ethics committees better protects participants, particularly for research analysing large aggregate datasets. International, data intensive research may require different assessment from research that risks physical harm to participants.1 2 However, concerns about liability mean that local ethics committees—and their administrators and institutional lawyers—tend to insist on reviewing research protocols themselves, rather than “delegating” review to another ethics committee or otherwise recognising outside reviews. These concerns are some of the main barriers to reform of the ethics review system for international research.3 We argue that the concerns are more perception than reality.The first concern is that mutual …
Original languageEnglish
Article numberi4181
Pages (from-to)1-2
JournalBritish Medical Journal (BMJ)
Publication statusPublished - 2 Aug 2016


Dive into the research topics of 'Streamlining ethical review of data intensive research'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this