New members sought for ethics committees

April 2, 2012

Murdoch University is looking for members of the public interested in helping make sure its research meets ethical standards.

The university needs to appoint new members to its Human Research Ethics Committee and Animal Ethics Committee. At least one new community member is required for each.

"These committees ensure that all Murdoch research involving people or animals meets the required legal and ethical standards," said Dr Erich von Dietze, Murdoch’s Manager, Research Ethics.

"Committee members learn about the research that goes on across the university and get involved in making decisions and providing advice to researchers about how their research should be conducted.

"It’s very important that the community has a voice in these decisions, and being on the committees can be very interesting and rewarding."

The Human Research Ethics Committee is responsible for approving all research at the university that involves human subjects or participants – from studies involving surveying or interviewing people to medical experiments.

The Animal Ethics Committee approves all research and teaching involving the use of animals, including the activities of the Veterinary School.

Each committee meets around 11 times a year. The Animal Ethics Committee also carries out inspections of all the facilities where animals are kept at the university.

The positions are not paid but training is provided and committee members’ travel expenses are reimbursed. While no specific qualifications are required, candidates for the Animal Ethics Committee role must not have worked with animals in any formal sense.

Anyone interested in either committee should email for more information.

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Media contact: Jo Manning
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