CHI 2020 Course

Dealing with Ethical Challenges in HCI Fieldwork 

HCI and Ethics

We are witnessing an increase in fieldwork within the field of HCI, particularly involving marginalized or under-represented populations. This has posed ethical challenges for researchers during such field studies, with "ethical traps" not always identified during planning stages. This is often aggravated by the inconsistent policy guidelines, training, and application of ethical principles. We ground this in our collective experiences with ethically-difficult research, and frame it within common principles that are common across many disciplines and policy guidelines – representative of the instructors’ diverse and international backgrounds.

CHI 2019 Course

In this tutorial we will explain the key principles that guide research with human participants, and how these apply to field studies of interactive technologies. This is largely based on existing policies that have been adopted nationally in some places or specific to certain disciplines or professional associations. We will discuss the gaps that exist between these guidelines and the challenges of conducting fieldwork of mobile interactive technologies, particularly in sensitive or difficult environments. These will be exemplified by cases studies of ours and our colleagues' recent research. A discussion of examples brought forward by the audience will also be facilitated.