The University Research Ethics Committee (UREC) is the overarching Committee at the University of Cambridge for the consideration of ethical issues arising from research that involves human participants and personal data. The Committee was established by the General Board in January 2009.
The remit of the UREC is as follows:
- To devise a University policy for approval by the General Board for the consideration and approval of research projects involving human participants or personal data, including the establishment of specialist sub-committees, where appropriate, to cover specific areas
- To monitor the implementation of this policy, establish associated procedures, and recommend to the Board any changes that are considered necessary in the light of experience;
- To consider and decide on any application for approval of research involving human participation or personal data which is referred to the Committee by one of its sub-committees or by any other relevant body
- To establish, implement, and keep under review a procedure for considering appeals against decisions made by sub-committees to withhold, suspend or withdraw approval of a research project which it considers to contravene University policies or procedures on research involving human participants or personal data
- To consider and advise on training provision for those involved in considering applications for research projects involving human participants or personal data and for those undertaking such research
- To receive and consider annual reports from local and School-level Research Ethics Committees
- To advise the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) on the development and implementation of policy and procedures related to research integrity
- To report annually to the General Board on matters within it's remit
Researchers who intend to appeal the decision of any Research Ethics Committee at Cambridge should see the appeals section of this site for guidance.
Complaints, or expressions of concern about research ethics at the University, can also be made to the University Research Ethics Committee, which will refer cases to the University's Misconduct Procedures when appropriate. The Committee welcomes approaches from whistleblowers with information concerning research ethics at the University. Staff are protected under the University's 'Whistleblowing' Policy.
- Lord Williams of Oystermouth (Chair)
- Professor Ross Anderson
- Professor John Bell
- Professor Graham Burton
- Professor Ian Cross
- Dr Lydia Drumright
- Professor Michael Lamb
- Professor Alison Liebling
- Mrs Carolyn Read
- Professor Keith Richards
- Rob Richardson (Student Representative)
- Professor John Suckling
- Professor Nicholas Wareham
- Jack Wright (Student Representative)
- External member: Professor Richard Ashcroft
- External member: Ms Rebekah Ley
- Dr Peter Hedges (Secretary)
- Dr Rhys Morgan (Assistant Secretary)
For general enquiries concerning the University Research Ethics Committee, please email Dr Rhys Morgan, Research Strategy Office.