Campus & Community

Memo On Human Subjects Research

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The memorandum from Provost Harvey Fineberg reprinted below is intended to remind members of the Harvard community about matters related to the conduct of human subjects research.

April 2000

To: Members of the Harvard Community

From: Provost Harvey V. Fineberg

Re: Human Subjects Research — A Reminder

Many members of the University are involved in the conduct of research in which human beings participate as subjects. Such research can take many forms, ranging from behavioral studies to biomedical research and beyond. The University has a number of “institutional review boards” (IRBs) that have a central role in assuring that human subjects research conducted at Harvard complies with applicable regulations and observes appropriate ethical norms.

All members of the University community who conduct human subjects research are responsible for informing themselves about these standards and for bringing proposals for such research to the attention of the appropriate IRB. A high degree of vigilance in this area is essential, to ensure that research complies with federal regulations and Harvard policy, and more generally to ensure that research done at Harvard rigorously respects the interests of human subjects while also advancing the search for new knowledge. Recent federal scrutiny of research at other universities reinforces the importance of our own continued careful attention to these matters.

Following this memorandum you will find a listing of offices and individuals at Harvard to whom you may direct questions about human subjects research–what it is, what procedures apply, what standards must be observed. In addition, members of the community are encouraged to consult the resources available through Websites related to human subjects research, including those that may be found at these addresses:

* (National Institutes of Health)

* (Food and Drug Administration)

* (Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences)

* (Harvard Medical School)

* (Harvard School of Public Health)

Many thanks for your careful attention to this important matter.

Faculty of Arts and gs and Other Faculties Outside the Medical Area:

Committee on the Use of Human Subjects in Research

Chair: Prof. Farish A. Jenkins Jr.
Phone: 5-2499
Fax: 5-5667

Contacts/Administrators: Dean Gallant and Jane Calhoun
Phone: 5-2627
Fax: 5-1210

Harvard School of Public Health: Human Subjects Committee

Chair: Dr. Troyen Brennan
Phone: 732-8961
Fax: 2-1079

Contact/Administrator: Angela Foss
Phone: 2-4513
Fax: 2-1079

Harvard Medical School and School of Dental Medicine: Committee on Human Studies

Chair: Dr. Julie Buring
Phone: 732-4965
Fax: 731-3843

Contact/Administrator: Carolyn Connelly
Phone: 2-0651
Fax: 2-2651

University Health Services: Committee on Human Research

Chair: Dr. Christopher Coley
Phone: 6-5804
Fax: 6-0560