Outsourcing Ethical Obligations: Should the Revised Common Rule Address the Responsibilities of Investigators and Sponsors?

Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 41 (2):397-410 (2013)


The Common Rule creates a division of moral labor in research. It implies that investigators and sponsors can outsource their ethical obligations to IRBs and participants, thereby fostering a culture of compliance, rather than one of responsibility. The proposed revisions to the Common Rule are likely to exacerbate this problem. To harness the expressive power of the law, I propose the Common Rule be revised to include the ethical responsibilities of investigators and sponsors

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