IRB Standards And Guidelines

UAF researchers are expected to maintain high professional standards as appropriate for their discipline.  Researchers must also comply with Federal regulations and, for projects receiving external funding, sponsor requirements; these requirements should serve as minimum professional standards.  It is the responsibility of principal investigators and student advisers to lead by example and to mentor trainees and staff in all aspects of research ethics and the responsible conduct of research.

Working with indigenous populations or disadvantaged groups requires additional care and preparation to ensure that activities are conducted in a culturally appropriate manner.  Since much of the work of UAF researchers is conducted with Alaska Native communities, we have tried to provide links to information issued by Native organizations and to groups that have a history of working with Native communities.

‘Walk softly and listen carefully’: Building research relationships with tribal communities. The National Congress of American Indians Policy Research Center and Montana State University's Center for Native Health Partnerships published this policy paper in 2012 called, "Walk Softly and Listen Carefully: Building Research Relationships with Tribal Communities". It was produced with insights from those involved with tribal research in Montana and elsewhere.

Principles for the Conduct of Research in the Arctic. Prepared by the Interagency Social Science Task Force in response to a recommendation by the Polar Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences and at the direction of the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee. They are not intended to replace other existing Federal, State, or professional guidelines, but rather to emphasize their relevance for the whole scientific community. Examples of similar guidelines used by professional organizations and agencies in the United States and in other countries are listed in the publications.

Guidelines for Improved Cooperation Between Arctic Researchers and Northern Communities: This is a draft (8/23/2004) document created by the NSF Office of Polar Programs Arctic Sciences Section and Barrow Arctic Science Consortium with input from the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission, the Barrow Whaling Captains Association, the Alaska North Slope Borough Department of Wildlife Management, and the Alaska Native Science Commission.

Alaska Federation of Natives Research Guidelines (available on the Alaska Native Knowledge Network Website)

Declaration of Helsinki, Ethical Principles for Medical Research Involving Human Subjects (revised Oct. 2008). This document was originally adopted by the World Medical Association in June 1964.

The Belmont Report released in 1979 by the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects in Biomedical and Behavioral Research, provides the ethical framework for the Federal Regulations designed to protect human research subjects.

Most of these links direct you to white papers, standards of professional conduct, or the code of ethic for a specified organization.

American Anthropological Association

American Historical Association

American Psychological Association

American Sociological Association (Code of Ethics)

Oral History Association

Social and Behavioral Science Working Group of the National Human Research Protection Advisory Committee

Public Responsibility in Medicine & Research (PRIM&R) is dedicated to creating, implementing, and advancing the highest ethical standards in the conduct of research.