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*****  To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org  *****

During a panel discussing this issue at Sunbelt a couple of years ago,
there seemed to be consensus that Sam's is the argument we all need to
make in cases like this.  Unless there is some particularly sensitive
behavior involved (drug use, HIV, incest, etc.) a network survey
presents no special risks beyond those associated with any other
empirical study of a social system.  It would be just as likely to learn
about my relationship with X in an unstructured interview, for instance.
Yet IRBs don't ask researchers using those methods to get permission
from all of their interviewees' acquaintances.  That would be
ridiculous, as it is in the case of routine social networks research.

There also seemed to be consensus that it is important to push back
firmly in these cases before overzealous IRBs shut down the whole social
networks research enterprise.  I wonder: Do IRBs accept as "precedent"
the decisions of other IRBs?  If so then maybe one step INSNA could take
is to collect proposals by members that have recently been approved.
That could provide a resource for people making these arguments, and it
might help seed/support the policy that Borgatti proposed.

Steve

________________________________________________
Steven R. (Steve) Corman
Professor, Hugh Downs School of Human Communication
Arizona State University
http://www.public.asu.edu/~corman

Chair, Organizational Communication Division
International Communication Association
http://www.icahdq.org

-----Original Message-----
From: Social Networks Discussion Forum [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
Behalf Of Sam Friedman
Sent: Monday, October 03, 2005 10:19 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [SOCNET] [Fwd: How to address the IRB's concern]

*****  To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org  *****

We have had the IRB accept our argument that the risk to the Alters is
minimal given very good confidentiality safeguards.  They do have the
right to accept a "minimal risk" argument.
sam

Sam Friedman
National Development and Research Institutes
71 West 23d Street, 8th floor
New York, NY 10010
USA
1 212 845 4467
Fax 1 917 438 0894
[log in to unmask]

>>> Rachel Garshick Kleit <[log in to unmask]> 10/3/2005 12:02:28
PM >>>

*****  To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org  *****

The alternative to contacting everyone on the list is one where the
names of
the alters is kept confidential from the researcher.  With egocentric
network information, you do not need to retain the names of the people
after
asking questions about them.  I've used surveys where I only collect
the
first name of the alter or assign a letter to them.  After the survey
is
completed, the identifier is retained, but the name is not.  When I've
explained this to the IRB, they have accepted the method as protecting
the
rights of the alters.

If one intends to contact the alters in the network, then the issues
are
slightly different, but I've not had experience there.

Rachel Garshick Kleit, PhD
Assistant Professor
Evans School of Public Affairs
University of Washington
Box 353033
209C Parrington Hall
Seattle, WA 98195-3055
tel: 206 221 3063
fax: 206 685 9044
email: [log in to unmask]
homepage: http://www.evansuw.org/fac/Kleit/
----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Borgatti" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Monday, October 03, 2005 8:50 AM
Subject: Re: [Fwd: How to address the IRB's concern]


> *****  To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org  *****
>
> One thing that would help long-term is if INSNA had a document
giving
> guidelines for ethically appropriate social network research. This
would
> allow researchers to point their IRBs to the document, saying that
their
> study is in compliance with standard norms.
>
> Steve.
>
> Steve Borgatti
> Professor & Chair
> Organization Studies Dept, Boston College
> Tel: +1 978 456 7356
> Fax: +1 978 456 7372
> E-mail: [log in to unmask]
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Social Networks Discussion Forum [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
On
> Behalf Of Bill.Richards
> Sent: Monday, October 03, 2005 11:45
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: [SOCNET] [Fwd: How to address the IRB's concern]
>
> *****  To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org  *****
>
> Nancy Leonard ([log in to unmask]) wrote to ask about addressing the
IRB's
> concern about the use of name rosters within a social network survey.
Is
> there
> an alternative to contacting everyone on the list to request their
> consent to include
> their name on that list?
>
>
_____________________________________________________________________
> SOCNET is a service of INSNA, the professional association for
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>
_____________________________________________________________________
> SOCNET is a service of INSNA, the professional association for
social
> network researchers (http://www.insna.org). To unsubscribe, send
> an email message to [log in to unmask] containing the line
> UNSUBSCRIBE SOCNET in the body of the message.
>

_____________________________________________________________________
SOCNET is a service of INSNA, the professional association for social
network researchers (http://www.insna.org). To unsubscribe, send
an email message to [log in to unmask] containing the line
UNSUBSCRIBE SOCNET in the body of the message.

_____________________________________________________________________
SOCNET is a service of INSNA, the professional association for social
network researchers (http://www.insna.org). To unsubscribe, send
an email message to [log in to unmask] containing the line
UNSUBSCRIBE SOCNET in the body of the message.

_____________________________________________________________________
SOCNET is a service of INSNA, the professional association for social
network researchers (http://www.insna.org). To unsubscribe, send
an email message to [log in to unmask] containing the line
UNSUBSCRIBE SOCNET in the body of the message.