Ethics

Knology is guided by a strict ethics code that governs both the ways we approach our workforce, workplace, and work community; and the standards we follow when pursuing our research. Our Board has formally adopted the ethics codes of the American Evaluation Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Anthropological Association. Knology has also agreed to adhere to the US federal legal requirements for the protection of human subjects in research funded by the federal government, irrespective of the source of funding. We have also developed clarifications to our principles where those codes of conduct are mute.

Diversity, Equity, Access, & Inclusion

The Knology team uses the following operational definitions for diversity, equity, access, and inclusion. We developed these descriptions based on our experiences and resources such as the American Alliance of Museums’ Facing Change publication. They form the foundation of our ethics as an organization.

Diversity

We strive to embrace diversity at Knology. Diversity includes all the ways in which people differ, and encompasses the different characteristics that make one individual or group different from another. While diversity is often used in reference to race, ethnicity, and gender, we embrace a broader definition that includes but is not limited to age, nationality, religion, (dis)ability, sexual orientation, class and socioeconomic status, education, marital status, language, physical appearance, and more. Our definition also covers diverse thinking: ideas, perspectives, and values. We recognize that individuals live their lives through multiple identities that are informed by context, and that an important part of embracing diversity is regular encounters with different ways of being and knowing.

Equity

We strive to practice equity at Knology. This means that we support the fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement of all people. Addressing equity issues requires an understanding of the historical and root causes of disparities in society. This makes it possible to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of some individuals or groups. Improving equity does not mean treating everyone the same way. Instead, it focuses on ensuring that fairness is at the heart of procedures, processes, systems, and distribution of resources.

Access

We strive to give equitable access to everyone at Knology, regardless of ability and experience. Accessibility refers to how we make space for each person to participate in our work. It includes creating conditions that ensure all people can participate and contribute to our work as well as benefit from its outputs or outcomes.

Inclusion

We strive to empower everyone at Knology with the tools and opportunity to contribute to meaningful work. An inclusive culture is marked by an intentional, consistent respect for and embracing of diversity, equity, and access. Prioritizing inclusion across multiple contexts -- the workforce, workplace, and work community -- enables each person and our collective group to thrive.

Research Ethics & Compliance

All research has ethical implications, and we take that seriously. Our commitment to ethical research is directly related to our commitment to equity and inclusion. We believe that the only research worth doing is research that takes into account a full range of perspectives, rather than repeating the loudest or most prevalent voices. This approach allows us to understand the multiple truths of any social issue. Our commitment to mixed methods is one way we live our values, in keeping with other critical, transformative, and constructivist approaches.

We are committed to our Federal Wide Assurance (#00021378). This means that we conduct all of our research in accordance with the ethical principles that underlie federal regulations protecting human research subjects, whether funded by the federal government or through private sources. All projects involving human subjects are subject to oversight from a federally registered Institutional Review Board.

Data Management & Privacy

Knology uses an internally created metadata plan that collects information for compliance with the external databases that are used to distribute data and reports, in accordance with any policies of the Institutional Review Board’s determination.

All plans for evaluation and research activities that involve human subjects are submitted for approval by an Institutional Review Board, before we conduct the research.

Wherever possible, we make anonymized raw evaluation and research data available to other research organizations or individuals, organizing those datasets in accordance with the principles of the National Science Digital Library. We make quantitative data available as read-only Google documents, with all personally identifiable information removed. Personally identifiable information includes but is not limited to names, contact and location information, certain demographic categories that are used infrequently, and textual responses that could reveal an identity based on their uniqueness. We determine on a case-by-case basis whether qualitative data -- such as observation notes, interview transcripts, text responses, etc. -- can be sufficiently anonymized. We announce the availability of data through the Knology website and post associated limitations or caveats alongside those data.

We provide copies of data collection and analysis protocols (such as data aggregation methods), as well as original data collection instruments. We make every effort to make the data available for public use within six months of submission of a final report or peer-reviewed manuscript, providing duplicate copies of the data as supplemental information on a journal’s website if these data are requested.

We store evaluation and research data in accordance with Knology’s data management standards and procedures to ensure the protection of privacy of human subjects. Prior to archiving, we remove all personally identifying information from any data files and recode individual observations with anonymous ID numbers or pseudonyms that de-link individuals from data collected about them.

We store electronic files of raw data and analysis files in a secure cloud that is password protected. Knology preserves raw data and analysis files for as long as the data may have value to the field, but not less than three years following the end of the project period.

In addition to Knology’s long-term commitment to archive data and curricular products, we seek long-term archiving opportunities through journal publications, partnerships with libraries, and look forward to including our data in trustworthy social science data archives, as they are developed.

Our Research Integrity Officer

You may report concerns regarding our research to our Research Integrity Officer at rio@knology.org. All reports will be confidential and individuals reporting concerns are protected under the organization’s Whistleblower policy.

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