University Research Ethics Committee (UREC)

The UREC's key tasks are to:

  • Uphold adherence to the University's 'Ethics Policy Governing Research Involving Human Participants, Personal Data and Human Tissue' by all University staff and registered students who undertake such research, wherever that takes place, and by all individuals who undertake or contribute to such research on University premises and facilities;
  • Promote awareness and understanding of research ethical issues throughout the University;
  • Advise on any ethical matters in research that are referred to it from within the University; and to
  • Keep abreast of the external research ethics environment and ensure that the University responds to all external requirements.

The actual ethical review of individual research ethics applications is undertaken by academic departments. For further information, follow the right-hand link to a short introductory presentation to the UREC.

Minutes of meetings of the University Research Ethics Committee

The minutes of recent Committee meetings are available on the right-hand side of this page in pdf format; please note that confidential minutes relating to the internal affairs of particular departments have been removed.

Terms of reference

The Committee reports to the Senate, and is responsible for:

i. The ongoing review of the University’s 'Ethics Policy Governing Research Involving Human Participants, Personal Data and Human Tissue', including providing guidance on its interpretation;

ii. Upholding adherence to this Policy and the University's Ethics Review Procedure (a part of the Policy), including:

  • auditing and accrediting the ethics review arrangements in place within academic departments and reviewing accreditation on at least a five yearly basis;
  • monitoring the ethics review arrangements in place within academic departments, which includes reviewing ethics decision making reports from academic departments on an annual basis;
  • providing guidance on cases of uncertainty and for making decisions on cases that cannot be resolved by ethics review panels;
  • hearing appeals against the decisions made by academic departments' ethics review panels (the Committee can overrule the decisions of ethics review panels);
  • in the event of concerns arising about whether a research proposal or ongoing research activity complies with the University’s Research Ethics Policy, suspending the approval process for that proposal, or suspending the research activity in question, pending further investigation.

iii. Promoting awareness and understanding of ethical issues in research throughout the University's research community (i.e. ethical issues that are relevant to research that involves human participants and also ethical issues that are relevant to other types of research);

iv. To provide advice on any ethical matters relating to research that are referred to it from within the University;

v. Keeping abreast of new externally-driven developments, policies and regulations concerning research ethics and, where appropriate, ensuring that the University meets all necessary requirements.

vi. Reviewing the Ethics Policy and associated documentation on at least a five-yearly basis, and more frequently should it be felt appropriate;

vii. Ensuring high quality representation of Faculty perspectives to the Committee through:

  • Asking that Faculty representatives commit to serve on the Committee for a minimum of two years in the first instance;
  • Asking that Faculty representatives usually serve for no longer than two full terms of three years each (therefore six in total) in that role on the Committee.

viii. Enabling specific funder requirements regarding ethical review to be met though the provision of relevant members of the Committee to act as ethics reviewers for specific projects (e.g. the provision of a lay member for the review of ESRC-funded applications).

Committee Membership

Professor Peter Bath Information School
Deputy Chair  
Dr Jennifer Burr ScHARR
Mrs Lindsay Unwin Team Leader, Quality and Governance, Research and Innovation Services
Minute Secretary  
Miss Anita Kenny Quality and Operations Officer, Quality and Governance, Research and Innovation Services
Senate Faculty Representatives  
Dr Eleanor Stillman Faculty of Science (School of Mathematics and Statistics)
Dr Jo Bates Faculty of Social Sciences
Dr Richard Cooper Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health (ScHARR)
Dr Claudia Mazza Faculty of Engineering (Department of Mechanical Engineering)
Dr Carmen Levick Faculty of Arts & Humanities (School of English)
Dr Ana Vivas International Faculty
Senate Professional Services Representative  
Professor David Petley Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Research & Innovation
Student representatives  
From the Department of Psychology Miss Harriet Baird
From the Department of Landscape Ms Lauriane Chalmin-Pui
External members  
Ms Maria Clark
Ms Margaret Ellis
The Venerable Robert Fitzharris
Dr. Yog Upadhyay
Co-Opted Members
Ms Anne Cutler CiCS
Mr Jez Cope University Library
Date Time
Wednesday 13th September 2017 2.15 pm
Wednesday 15th November 2017 2.15 pm
Wednesday 14th February 2018 2.15 pm
Wednesday 16th May 2018 2.15 pm