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Fieldwork preparation guidelines

Ethics are a very important issue for gathering data involving other living beings or persons, or even sensible data, such as autobigraphies or journals. Researchers in any social sciences will have to tackle this problem sooner or later when they intend to publish their data internationally or in academic journals which may ask to see how the data was handled.

Although the German universities have central ethics committees, these committees only become active if projects are screened or will be screened, but this is not enough for international research projects.

Our PIs and colleagues in the German Anthropological Association (DGSKA)have finally published very usable guidelines for fieldwork: https://en.dgska.de/ethics/

We would also recommend to at least think about discussing the DGSKA reflectivity sheet with your supervisor(s) before going to the field. Especially in times of crisis, such as during a pandemic, the risk assessment sheet could also be useful before going into the field.