The Research Ethics Committee at ÉTS
Questions of ethics are at the heart of university research. They are also an assurance of the respectability and the credibility of an institution and its researchers. This is why ÉTS has put in place a Research Ethics Committee: it must ensure that the work of its researchers respects the principles and standards generally recognized by society and the granting agencies as well as other organizations in the research community.
The Research Ethics Committee’s Mandate
The Research Ethics Committee (in French, the Comité d’éthique de la recherche or CÉR) assesses the ethical acceptability of any research projects conducted with human participants and carried out by ÉTS researchers, students and/or employees, regardless of where the research takes place. To do this, it applies the ÉTS Research Ethics Policy (in French, PDF), the Tri-Council Policy Statement (TCPS2-2014) (external site) as well as standards in force in Québec and Canada.
Under the policy, the ÉTS Research Ethics Committee may:
- Conditionally approve a project for which the ethical acceptability is deemed insufficient (recommendations will be issued with a view to correcting the situation);
- Approve unconditionally a project for which the ethical acceptability is considered satisfactory;
- Refuse a project that is not ethically acceptable;
- Terminate a current research project, if it no longer meets fundamental ethical principles.
It is also responsible for:
- Ensuring continuous monitoring of all approved research projects;
- Receiving complaints from participants, when the problem raised cannot be settled directly with the principal investigator (the person in charge of the research);
- Taking adequate measures to deal with conflicts of interest in connection with the research projects evaluated;
- Authorizing the release of research funds.
The CÉR also ensures that research projects carried out using animals or with hazardous biological substances have obtained a Certificate of Compliance before the work begins.