[Coral-List] Ethical science within community-based projects

Mael Imirizaldu mael.imirizaldu at hotmail.fr
Tue Apr 16 01:22:40 EDT 2013

Dear colleagues, 

As part of a
“Science for Action strategy" Conservation International New-Caledonia and the Loyalty Islands Province are implementing for the management of the
World Heritage Site of Ouvea & Beautemps-Beaupré (New Caledonia), we’re trying
to establish a research ethic for an ethical science within community-based projects. The main objectives are 1) To respect the expectations
from local communities in terms of information, awareness, involvement,
appropriate behavior, etc… 2) To Ensure that science feeds back into decision
making and address management issues and 3) To Facilitate the studies in site
while connecting researchers to local communities/stakeholders and simplifying
the process (traditional protocol, site access, key-person). In order to
develop a Letter of Agreement that
reaches these goals for Ouvéa Island’s specific context, several surveys will be
conducted with local communities, decision-makers and scientists from New

Prior to
this, we would like to share experience with international scientists &
experts with experience of community-based management projects. Through this
preliminary survey we would like to get general feedback (Benefits /
Difficulties) over projects linking scientists, managers and communities. Your
answers and suggestions will help us to strengthen our “Science to Action” Strategy. 

If you are interested in participating (or forwarding to colleagues), just copy/paste the following text in a Word document (.doc/.docx) and send the completed form to the following contact. f you need any
more detail about our project or if you have any question/comments concerning this survey,
please feel free to contact:  
IMIRIZALDU – Consultant for Conservation International  New-Caledonia

Contact: mael.imirizaldu at hotmail.fr 

Thank you for
your help. As far as possible, try to develop in a few sentence (if wanted)
your answers so we can better understand your perception.



* All information
collected through this survey will remain private and anonymous.

First of all, what is your perception
of such a “Research Ethic” for projects implemented in a locally managed area?


2)       When going on the field : 


What are your own major constraints
when preparing a fieldtrip? (Related to your current projects, schedules,
funds, deadlines, etc…)


What are your expectations toward the
different stakeholders (Managers, Communities’ leaders)? (Logistic,
facilitation, information, site access ….)


What are the main issues/difficulties
you can encounter while working with local communities?


3)       Involving local people as part of a
capacity-building strategy : 


Does the involvement of member(s)
from the community represent for you a constraint or a benefit?


What level of involvement do you usually
share with people from the communities (sharing information, guiding, involving
in surveys/monitoring/experimentation…)? Would you be keen for more involvement
and if so, under which conditions?


Is it normal to anticipate as part of
the study project, a minimum rate to provide for any member of the community
involved in the project implementation?


4)       Keeping the communities informed : 


When first contacting a community or
individual to seek access, is it important to take time explaining in a meeting
the nature and purpose of proposed research, its foreseeable consequences for
resources, people and accessors? What benefits and constraints from such a


Before leaving the community, do you
usually provide a short preliminary description of the finding of the work?
Again, do you see any benefits / constraints in taking time for this?


Prior to any peer-review publication
and even if the research are still ongoing, is it an important thing to come
back into communities to provide the main results and discuss implications in
terms of management? Again, do you see any benefits / constraints in taking
time for this? How soon after the end of the study seem reasonable to ensure that restitution?


What difficulties will you face in
coming back to community to present your results ?


When coming back to communities for
restitution, do you usually provide awareness materials such as main result
summary (or anything else)? 

 5)       Taking part to the decision-making
process :


When working with Decision-maker, do
you usually take part to anticipate meeting to better define the project
guidance accordingly to policy strategies and information needed? Do you think
it’s an important step?


More than just recommendations in a
final report, do you think that it is important to provide proper restitution
to better influence the decision-making?


Does providing the results’ key points
through supportive materials prior to any scientific publication could
represent a constraint?




We gratefully thank you for helping us.Best regards


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