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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 78502 Find in a Library
Title: Management Research in Criminal Justice - Exploring Ethical Issues
Journal: Journal of Criminal Justice  Volume:9  Issue:1  Dated:(1981)  Pages:41-49
Author(s): R R Roberg
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 9
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Management research in criminal justice organizations is examined with respect to the critical ethical issues that management researchers must resolve if they are to avoid potential harm to their subjects and to assure the validity of their results.
Abstract: The primary ethical issues relate to the objectivity of the research effort, the analysis and use of the research data, the self-determination of the study participants, and confidentiality for study respondents. Instead of trying to remove all personal biases and prejudices from the research process, researchers should accurately report the perspectives from which the results were drawn and acknowledge that their study reveals results from only one perspective. A detailed discussion of the methods and analytical procedures used should also be provided to enable other researchers, who may have different value orientations, to replicate the research and produce the same or conflicting conclusions. In addition, both positive and negative findings should be discussed. Moreover, the investigator and the organization must come to a mutual understanding of how the information will be used and who will have access to it. Organizational members must be guaranteed that the information collected will be used solely for the purpose for which it was intended and that it will remain anonymous if desired. Research subjects must also be informed about the nature of the research and must be able to make a free and informed choice about whether or not to participate. where prisoners or lower level employees are the potential subjects, researchers must distinguish between coercion and self-determination. Harm resulting from both acts of commission and acts of omission must be considered. Confidentiality should be ensured by means of the study design or destruction of the research data. Specific strategies for addressing ethical considerations in the future include ethical codes and guidelines, the use of review boards, and incorporation of discussions of ethical issues into college curriculums. Notes and 18 references are provided.
Index Term(s): Code of ethics; Management; Operations research; Organization studies; Professional conduct and ethics; Research design; Research methods; Researcher subject relations
Note: Revised version of a paper presented at the annual meeting of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, Cincinnati, Ohio, March, 1979.
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