Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)

Ethical review of research


The AISSR has developed a procedure for the ethical review of research plans. Beware: the idea is not for you to flag up rules that you promise to observe and neither for you to present us with forms. Instead of adding to formalities, we seek to foster reflection and care. We expect requests for ethics permission to articulate and address the real, true and sometimes irreducible problems that you face. In order to support that way of working, we do not provide a checklist for you to check, but questions that we challenge you to think about. Please, work with these questions in an open and explorative way. The aim is for you to devote time and effort to thinking through and making explicit how your research plans will lead to good research, not only in a methodological sense but also in another sense, call it social, ethical, aesthetic or something else.

Through the link below you will find questions that will help you to decide whether asking for ethical permission is required or might be wise and to design your research in an ethical way and to compose your ethics section.


If you ask for ethical permission, your research plan, including your ethics section, will be assessed by the AISSR Ethics Advisory Board, which is composed of researchers at the Amsterdam Institute of Social Science Research. In the case of a disagreement, it is possible to call upon the ethics committee of the Social Science Faculty. Please note that PhD students are all required to complete the ethics application to the online protal as part of our training programme (also when ethical approval might not be needed).

If your answers make good enough sense, permission will be granted. If there are difficulties to attend to, however, the Ethical Advisory Board will engage in a dialogue with you.

We cannot read full research proposals, but hope for succinct summaries of research plans plus answers to our questions through the online portal. Please take the following steps to submit your research for ethical review:

  1. Go to the online ethics portal:
  2. Log in with your UvA ID and password
  3. Submit your project (New project)
  4. Select the department (AISSR)
  5. Click save
  6. Answer the General and Ethics (10) questions.
  7. Questions? Contact: / 525 3659

Board members

The Faculty Ethics Committee has formally mandated the AISSR Ethics Advisory Board to advise and give guidance in addressing ethical issues specific to research in the domain of social sciences. This board supports the ethical reflection on new research projects and, if needed, grants permission to conduct them.

The AISSR Ethical Advisory Board consists of a core group of AISSR researchers with different disciplinary and methodological backgrounds. It currently consists of: Dr Thijs Bol, Dr Michaela Hordijk, Dr Tom van der Meer, Prof. Annemarie Mol and Dr Rachel Spronk. When necessary, they call on the advice of third parties. The board is coordinated by Karen Kraal, MA

Board meetings

The board meets on:

  • 12 December, 2016
  • 13 February, 2017
  • 10 April, 2017
  • 12 June, 2017

Please submit your proposal no later than one week in advance of the meeting


If you have questions or would like to submit a research proposal for ethical review, please contact: 

Published by  AISSR

16 February 2017