Saturday, December 12, 2009


Google Alerts uncovered an April 2008 memo from the Army's chief of military history, explaining that while Army historians are obliged to obtain the informed consent of anyone they interview, the U.S. Army's Historical Program does not consider oral history to be under IRB purview:

Given that oral history is the collection of personal and unique insights on events, it does not fit the definition of scientific research as outlined in 45 Code of Federal Regulations 46 that is at the center of the Department of Health and Human Services regulations of the issue. Oral histories are not a "systematic" attempt to gather data from "human subjects" that can be used in any way to contribute to "generalizable" knowledge. They are therefore exempt from HRPP oversight and IRBs.

Happy Birthday, Institutional Review Blog!

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