Research Integrity and Ethics

Visible Language requires that research reported has been conducted ethically following applicable local governance or guidelines equivalent to the Institutional Review Board system used in the United States of America and defined by the 1979 Belmont Report. At a minimum, research reported in Visible Language must have been conducted showing: 

Respect for Persons - applying at least two ethical convictions 

(1) that individual participants in research should be treated as autonomous agents 
(2) that persons with diminished autonomy are entitled to special protection

Beneficence - persons are treated in an ethical manner not only by respecting their decisions and protecting them from harm, but also by making efforts to secure their well-being. Two general rules have been formulated as complementary expressions of beneficent actions in this sense:  

(1)  do not harm
(2)  maximize possible benefits and minimize possible harms

Justice – those who bear the burdens of research ought to also stand to receive the benefits of research.  

An injustice occurs when some benefit to which a person is entitled is denied without good reason or when some burden is imposed unduly. Another way of conceiving the principle of justice is that equals ought to be treated equally. However, this statement requires explication. Who is equal and who is unequal? What considerations justify departure from equal distribution? Almost all commentators allow that distinctions based on experience, age, deprivation, competence, merit, and position do sometimes constitute criteria justifying differential treatment for certain purposes. It is necessary, then, to explain in what respects people should be treated equally. There are several widely accepted formulations of just ways to distribute burdens and benefits. Each formulation mentions some relevant property on the basis of which burdens and benefits should be distributed. These formulations are:  

(1) to each person an equal share,  
(2) to each person according to individual need
(3) to each person according to individual effort
(4) to each person according to societal contribution
(5) to each person according to merit