Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans (TCPS2)

The Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans (TCPS or the Policy) is a joint policy of Canada’s three federal research agencies – the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), or “the Agencies.”

This Policy expresses the Agencies’ continuing commitment to the people of Canada to promote the ethical conduct of research involving humans. It has been informed, in part, by leading international ethics norms, all of which may help, in some measure, to guide Canadian researchers, in Canada and abroad, in the conduct of research involving humans. 

This edition represents the first substantive change to the Policy since its adoption in 1998. It is a major revision, reflecting over a decade of experience in the application of the Policy by the research community to existing and emerging ethical issues and new areas of research. It also distils the experience of the Interagency Advisory Panel on Research Ethics (PRE or the Panel), which was created in 2001 primarily to steward the evolution and interpretation of this Policy, and to provide the Agencies with independent advice on issues related to the ethics of research involving humans. This edition, which replaces the original TCPS, draws on the advice provided to the Panel by its working groups and committees. As well, it reflects the significant and valuable input from the research community and all those who provided feedback on the drafts that the Panel circulated publicly in December 2008 and December 2009.

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