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Research Ethics Committee

We welcome Expressions of Interest (EOIs) from people who have an interest in ensuring research has a positive impact for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and are committed to the continuous improvement of the quality and standards of research.

Expressions of Interest close 1 November 2021. 

Role of the Research Ethics Committee (REC)

The REC’s responsibility is to review research projects for a broad range of stakeholders (government, external organisations, universities and industry) involving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and/or communities.  

The REC:

  • Provides independent, competent and timely review and monitors all research projects referred by AIATSIS for ethical review.
  • Reviews projects involving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research to ensure ethical standards have been met in accordance with the AIATSIS Code of Ethics for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Research and the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research.
  • Safeguards and promotes the standards set out in the AIATSIS Code by:
    • promoting ethical and responsible practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research in Australia;
    • increasing the contribution of Indigenous knowledge to Australian research; and
    • ensuring research has a positive impact.

Membership

Membership will be determined consistent with the requirements of the National Statement Sections 5.1.29–5.1.33.

The REC currently has positions available for the following vacancies:

  • Researcher - Persons with knowledge of, and current experience in, research with or about Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people.
  • Practitioner - Knowledge of, and current experience in, the professional care, counselling or treatment of people.
  • Pastoral care - An Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Elder, current Minister of Religion or a person who performs a similar role in the community.
  • Lay Person - Persons with no affiliation to AIATSIS and who do not engage in medical, scientific, legal or academic work.
  • Lawyer - Persons who are legally trained or lawyers.

Applicants can apply to one or more of the categories, but can only be appointed to one. Members are appointed for three years.

AIATSIS values equal opportunity and appoints REC members to reflect diversity of:

  • Lived experience including age, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • Experience in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander societies and knowledge systems.

The REC strives for a majority Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and a gender balance.

Your commitment as a member

As a member, you must:

  • Have a commitment to ensure that AIATSIS continues to set the highest standards of ethics.
  • Support human rights in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research and the objectives of the REC.
  • Become familiar with and apply the AIATSIS Code and National Statement in reviewing all research projects;
  • Attend a minimum of four annual meetings (face-to-face or via videoconference).
  • Read all applications in preparation for a REC meeting (approximately three to four hours).
  • Commit to reviewing responses from applicants (approximately four hours per month).

Members are remunerated for their contribution to the REC.