Ethics of population-based research

Holly A. Taylor, Summer Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper considers the morally relevant ways in which population-based research is a distinct type of human subjects research that have unique moral considerations relevant for public health practitioners and researchers. By defining population-based research, the authors distinguish it from public health practice and then consider, in more detail, the ways in which population-based research differs from clinical human subjects research. Based upon the distinctions between these types of research and practice, they identify five important issues that arise in the design and conduct of certain kinds of population-based research. The authors hope that public health practitioners find these distinctions useful in determining when their work may actually be population-based research and that public health researchers use them to identify the areas where ethical issues in their research may arise.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)295-299
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Law, Medicine and Ethics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Health Policy


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