UNSW has three Human Research Ethics Committees (HRECs) which are registered and certified with the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC). All HRECs are responsible for reviewing more than low risk research.
The Presiding Member for Human Research at UNSW is Professor Kathy Petoumenos.
More than low risk research is classified as any research that leads (or has the potential) to harms:
- Human research, procedures, or activities where a person, organisation, vulnerable population, broader community, or the research team are exposed to physical, psychological, social, economic, legal, or travel harms.
- Human research procedures or activities where a person may experience distress or devaluation of personal worth.
- Research involving or about Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander People or their communities.
- Any research activity involving the following:
- People highly dependent on medical care who may be unable to give consent (National Statement 5.1.6)
- People with cognitive impairment, an intellectual disability, or a mental illness (National Statement 5.1.6)
- People who may be involved in illegal activities.
- Research involving active concealment or planned deception.
- Research that aims to expose illegal activity.
- Waiver of consent for research using personal information in medical research or personal health information.
- Prospective collection of humans biospecimens for research (National Statement 3.2.1)
- Genomic Research (National Statement 3.3)
- Clinical Trials Involving Investigational Medical Products, Devices, Surgery, Surgical Procedures, or Ionising Radiation use.
- Clinical Interventions
Harms are defined in the National Statement and include the following:
- Physical harms: including injury, illness, pain;
- Psychological harms: including feelings of worthlessness, distress, guilt, anger or fear related, for example, to the disclosure of sensitive or embarrassing information, or learning about a genetic possibility of developing an untreatable disease;
- Devaluation of personal worth: including being humiliated, manipulated or in other ways treated disrespectfully or unjustly;
- Social harms: including damage to social networks or relationships with others; discrimination in access to benefits, services, employment or insurance; social stigmatisation; and findings of previously unknown paternity status;
- Economic harms: including the imposition of direct or indirect costs on participants;
- Legal harms: including discovery and prosecution of criminal conduct.
- Travel harms: Research is being conducted in a country where the travel advice is a level 3 – reconsider your need to travel or level 4 – do not travel for research.
|Prof Kathy Petoumenos||Chairperson|
|A/Prof Steven Most||Deputy Chairperson|
|Ms Cherry Siu||Lawyer|
|Ms Penelope Broekhuizen||Layperson|
|Ms Deborah Lum||Layperson|
|Ms Susan Uhlmann||Pastoral Care|
|Ms Xueling Zhu||Professional Care|
|Professor Bettina Meiser||Researcher|
|A/Prof Richard Morris||Researcher|
|Dr Lisa Nivision-Smith||Researcher|
|Dr Linda Truong||Researcher|
|Dr WuYi Zheng||Researcher|
|Scientia A/Prof Natasa Gisev||Chairperson|
|Dr Cathy Thomson||Deputy Chairperson|
|Mr Fiorentine (Dean) Pefani||Lawyer|
|Mr Ross Bootes||Layperson|
|Ms Sharon O'Sullivan||Layperson|
|Ms Amanda Reid||Layperson|
|Mr Tito Scohel||Layperson|
|Rabbi Alon Meltzer||Pastoral Care|
|Ms Chantel Fiala-Beer||Professional Care|
|Dr Alan Chiang||Researcher|
|A/Prof Rohina Joshi||Researcher|
|Miss Rebecca Anderson||Researcher|
|Prof Mandy Cheng||Researcher|
|Dr Peter Gates||Researcher|
|Dr Lauriane Juge||Researcher|
|A/Prof Yang Song||Researcher|
|Ms Leonne Thompson||Secretariat|
|Dr Chaturaka Rodrigo||Chairperson|
|A/Prof Lucinda Burns||Deputy Chairperson|
|Mr Glynn Gill||Lawyer|
|Ms Josephine Lumb||Lawyer|
|Ms Martha Keyse||Layperson|
|Ms Joanne Miniter||Layperson|
|Mr Peter Robertson||Layperson|
|Mr Lewis Jones||Pastoral Care|
|Dr Patricia Reyes||Professional Care|
|Dr Suraj Samtani||Professional Care|
|Dr Meghan Ambrens||Researcher|
|Dr Vibeke Catts||Researcher|
|Dr George (Kev) Dertadian||Researcher|
|A/Prof Timothy Dobbins||Researcher|
|Dr Jane Hwang||Researcher|
|A/Prof Marina Nehme||Researcher|
|Mr Adam Theobald||Researcher|
|Dr Simin Masoudi||Researcher|
|Ms Helen Monaghan||Researcher|
Researchers must apply for human ethics approval in the UNSW iRECS portal.
You can navigate through the iRECS New Ethics Online Updates for further info on the iRECS background, transition timeline, and FAQs. Please note that Human Ethics is not utilising the correspondence feature in iRECS. For further submission advice, the RECS Human Ethics team is contactable at firstname.lastname@example.org.
All active Human Ethics projects have been migrated onto the iRECS Portal. Only the Chief Investigator (CI) will have read, write, and submit access to previously approved legacy projects that have been migrated into the iRECS Portal. Chief Investigators must grant collaborator access to any co-investigators, student investigators, and research personnel who require read/write access to previously approved legacy projects. If you cannot immediately view the project you will need to follow the instructions in the following help guide: