Research Ethics

Two students talking in TBS hallway

Trinity College Dublin requires that prior to a research study commencing, ethical review is carried out for all proposed research involving human subjects that is conducted by staff and students. Please consult the TCD Good Research Practice Guide for detailed discussion of good research practice and the role of research ethics and ethical review.

In the School of Business, the School’s Research Ethics Committee meets at least once a semester to review research ethics applications.  The Committee will normally provide a response within two weeks but not more than one month after submission. 

The School’s Committee is a Level One Committee and is constituted to review low risk research projects, as follows:

  • Anonymous surveys of a non-intrusive personal nature.
  • Unrecorded and anonymous observation of individuals in public areas.
  • Analysis of irrevocably anonymized and appropriately collected data.
  • Interviews (consensual) with non-vulnerable adults.
  • Action research
  • Surveys where respondents can be identified and where respondents have given appropriate consent.

The School will also conduct ethical review for research proposals where the researcher must secure local level approval before submitting their proposal to a further review committee (for example, the Committee will review a proposal for a School of Business PhD student conducting organizational research in a health setting who requires local committee approval before submitting the research application to the HRB or Hospital Research Ethics Committee).   Proposals for medium to high risk research projects should be submitted to a Level Two committee, such as the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Research Ethics Committee, as the School of Business’ Research Ethics Committee is not mandated to review Level Two proposals.

To apply for ethical approval in the School of Business, please send the committee an electronic copy of your completed, signed, standard application form along with the appropriate supporting documents.  These are usually your research instrument (e.g. your questionnaire, or interview schedule), participant information sheet and participant consent form.   These documents are all available in the links at the top of this page.

The application form and accompanying material should be emailed to