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Ethics of research and operations

In 2022, we launched the work of Luke’s internal research ethics committee and the ethical committee on empirical research related to natural resources.

The role of the research ethics committee is to assist Luke’s management in evaluating, preparing and deciding on collaborative initiatives proposed from within or outside Luke, particularly with regard to ethical issues relating to different forms of collaboration, partners and sources of funding, and the use of research results. The research ethics committee regularly reviews Luke’s internal procedures to ensure that the principles of responsible science and Luke’s Code of Conduct are respected.

The role of the ethical committee on empirical research related to natural resources is to evaluate experimental research against the ‘Do no significant harm’ (DNSH) principle and to review research ethics. The committee has developed a preliminary model and guidelines for the ethical pre-approval of Luke’s field experiments. The guidelines have been developed specifically from the perspective of the DNSH principle and have been supplemented with additional guidance on animal rights and welfare. Preliminary testing of the guidelines was carried out in late 2022, with the aim of piloting the guidelines and model in Luke’s own experimental forest research in 2023. During 2022, we were in active dialogue with the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity (TENK). We contributed to a study exploring the need for ethical principles and pre-approval of scientific research at the national level.  Our cooperation with TENK will continue in 2023.

In 2022, we also produced an internal podcast on Luke’s Code of Conduct.