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In defence of anonymity: rejoining the criticism

Kelly, Anthony (2009) In defence of anonymity: rejoining the criticism British Educational Research Journal, 35, (3), pp. 431-445. (doi:10.1080/01411920802044438).

Record type: Article

Abstract

This article is a response to the growing criticisms of the British Educational Research Association (BERA) and Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) ethical guidelines on anonymity and pseudonymity as default positions for participants in qualitative educational research. It discusses and responds to those criticisms under four headings—illusion, impossibility and undesirability, access and quality—and extends the explication of difficulties to quantitative approaches using an example from value-added effectiveness research. The article discusses potential flaws in the arguments made against anonymous and pseudonymous research, and presents some issues for the research community to take forward. Finally, some suggestions are offered for a modified code of practice regarding anonymity and pseudonymity, which attempts a more subtle capture of difficulties in the field and qualifies the existing rationale to take account of previously unconsidered technical concerns.

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More information

Published date: 19 June 2009
Additional Information: First published as an iFirst article 19 August 2008
Keywords: anonymity, research ethics, pseudonymity, research guidelines

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 63556
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/63556
ISSN: 0141-1926
PURE UUID: c362844f-a1ba-4679-b472-72e9ade8014c
ORCID for Anthony Kelly: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-4664-8585

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 16 Oct 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 14:16

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