Manipulation of information in medical research: Can it be morally justified?

TitleManipulation of information in medical research: Can it be morally justified?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsLignou, S, Edwards, SJL
JournalResearch Ethics
Date Published2012
Publication Languageeng
Keywordsbeliefs , criterion , desires , duty , framing , Manipulation , Medical , research , researcher’s
AbstractThe aim of this article is to examine whether informational manipulation, used intentionally by the researcher to increase recruitment in the research study, can be morally acceptable. We argue that this question is better answered by following a non-normative account, according to which the ethical justifiability of informational manipulation should not be relevant to its definition. The most appropriate criterion by which informational manipulation should be considered as morally acceptable or not is the researcher’s special moral duties towards their subjects. We also propose that a broader definition of manipulation of information should be adopted (than that already existing in the literature) since informational manipulation can affect not only a person’s beliefs but also their desires in decision-making. We conclude that manipulation of information can either be used to protect the potential subject and facilitate the informed consent process or be used to exploit and merely use a person for scientific goals. 
NotesLignou, Sapfo 1 Edwards, Sarah JL 2; Affiliation: 1: PhD student, University College London, UK 2: University College London, UK; Source Info: Mar2012, Vol. 8 Issue 1, p9; Subject Term: MEDICAL informatics; Subject Term: MEDICAL research; Subject Term: CRITERION (Theory of knowledge); Subject Term: RESEARCH -- Moral & ethical aspects; Subject Term: MANIPULATION checks (Research); Subject Term: DUTY; Author-Supplied Keyword: beliefs; Author-Supplied Keyword: desires; Author-Supplied Keyword: framing effects; Author-Supplied Keyword: manipulation of information; Author-Supplied Keyword: researcher’s moral duties; NAICS/Industry Codes: 541712 Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences (except Biotechnology); Number of Pages: 15p; Document Type: Article