Alister Thorpe

Decolonising ethics? A critical analysis of researchers intended ethical research practices and the role of Indigenous communities in ensuring ethical research

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From an Indigenous standpoint, how do researchers demonstrate the values of reciprocity, respect, equality, responsibility, survival and protection, and spirit and integrity?

The purpose of this study was to explore how researchers operationalise the NHMRC’s ethical guidelines. Three distinct groups, Indigenous participants, Indigenous community coordinators, and researchers, that have participated in or conducted Indigenous health research (since 2003) were recruited to participate in semi-structured interviews. The interviews explored their experiences of ethical conduct in Indigenous health research.

A decolonising approach was adopted applying a critical race-grounded methodology to privilege Indigenous voices in the research and to allow broader examination of dominant social structures in the Australian context.



Centre for Health Equity, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health

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