Research Ethics and Integrity

Central aims to provide ethical leadership to theatre and performance research and to practice research across the sector.

Good Conduct in Research Ethics

All research at Central operates within the framework set down in the School’s Research Ethics and Integrity Handbook, updated in 2020, (and available on the right hand side of this page). Key aspects of this code of conduct can be summarised as follows.

Central aims to provide ethical leadership to theatre and performance research and to practice research across the sector. The guidelines provided in our Research Conduct and Ethics Handbook were written to ensure their consistency with relevant sources of sector best practice, including the Universities UK’s Concordat to Support Research Integrity and policies on good research conduct provided by Conservatoires UK and the UK Research Integrity Office (UKRIO). Our guidance is further underpinned by the statutes, Acts of Parliament and Government guidelines relevant to good conduct in research (including the Data Protection Act and Prevent duty guidance) as well as Central’s own policies including our equal opportunities policy and Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults policy.

Research at Central assumes the Nolan committee’s seven principles of public life: selflessness; integrity; objectivity; accountability; openness; honesty; leadership.

Staff and students engaged in research foster good practice and intellectual integrity in all professional circumstances. Principles emphasised by researchers at all levels are: care and avoidance of harm; honesty and openness; accountability and appropriate documentation; confidentiality; informed consent; avoidance of conflicts of interest; compliance with the law and relevant codes of conduct; due acknowledgement of collaborators, informants, participants or other contributors.

All research involving human participants must have ethical approval. Ethical approval is also required for projects that may not involve human participants but raise other ethical issues in potential social or environmental implications of the study. All such projects undertaken by research students and staff are submitted to the Research Ethics and Integrity Sub-committee for approval. Central operates an initial Ethics filter (low risk) for research involving human participants with a second stage (full) application for higher risk projects.

Dr Stephen Farrier, as Chair of the Research Ethics and Integrity Sub-committee, acts as the staff member overseeing research integrity and the first point of contact for anyone wanting more information on matters of research integrity.

Dan Hetherington, Head of Research Services, provides a named point of contact for any person wishing to raise concerns about the integrity of research being conducted under Central’s auspices. Details of Central's whistle-blowing policy and named points of contact can be found here.

Staff are regularly updated on good research practice.