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Research Ethics Committee

Welcome to the webpage of the Ethics Committee of the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies.

At the Faculty of ThRS, we are committed to doing research in a responsible manner, as described in the 'Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity'. On this page you will find information about the ethics procedures of the faculty and links to relevant websites for more guidance.

Tasks of the Ethics Committee

The Ethics Committee has three core tasks:

  1. The ethics committee is tasked with providing approval of research of researchers and PhD candidates appointed at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies of the University of Groningen.
  2. The approval is limited to the quality of reflection and measures taken by the faculty member on matters of research ethics, data protection and data management of the research.
  3. The ethics committee provides solicited and unsolicited advice to the Faculty Board and to staff members relating to measures on research ethics, data protection and data management of research by staff and by students.
  4. The ethics committee regularly reviews forms and procedures on matters of research ethics, data protection and data management of the Faculty, to ensure new insights with regard to these topics are included. Such insights can come from experience within the Faculty or the University, but also from national and international developments.
  5. The ethics committee is available to provide policy advice on education on research ethics.

The committee consists of the following members:

A. Visser chairperson
J. Martínez-Ariño member
C. Jedan ethicist
H. ten Have advisory member

The committee meets every month between September and July.

If you have any questions, after reading the information on this page, please contact the Ethics Committee at ethicscommittee.ggw


Registration of your research

Whenever you want to undertake a new research project, we ask you to register your research using this form. To prepare, you can consult this pdf version of the form.

Please note that you need a Google account to be able to upload your proposal and other documents in the form, so please access this form through your RUG account. If you do not have a Google account, you can email the documents to ethicscommittee.ggw using the email address you have indicated in the form.

The form consists of four sections: General information, Impact on stakeholders, Data protection, and Data management plan. Depending on the type of research you will do, you have to fill out specific sections of the form. Please see the decision tree below for more information.


If your project entails the collection of personal data, then we recommend that you discuss your research with the faculty’s Privacy and Security Coordinator, Harrie ten Have (h.a.ten.have You can schedule a meeting with him via his Google calendar.

If you are a PhD student or a junior researcher, we also recommend that you fill out the registration form in consultation with your supervisor or the primary investigator on your project.

Review of your research

The ethics committee will review your research proposal when:

  • the research is conducted with living humans
  • the research procedures might pose a danger to the researcher(s) and/or assistants.
  • the research objectives might cause a conflict of interest

The Privacy and Security Coordinator (Harrie ten Have; h.a.ten.have will always review the sections on data protection and research data management.

Make sure you request ethics clearance well in advance of the commencement of data collection. Data collection may not commence before the ethics committee has communicated its approval of the research to the applicant.

Is approval by an ethics committee a requirement for a research grant application? Then you can submit only the grant application for preliminary approval. When the grant is awarded, you should submit the questionnaire with the full proposal and any additional documents for definitive approval by the ethics committee.

If you have requested ethics clearance, you can expect to receive the review within six weeks. Therefore, please submit your research proposal as soon as possible.

After ethics clearance

After you’ve received ethics clearance, you need to archive the documents:

  • Research staff store the completed questionnaire and letter of approval by the ethics committee on the Y-drive (Y:\staff\ggw\Datamanagement) and submit them for their annual R&O interviews.
  • PhD candidates submit the completed questionnaire and letter of approval by the ethics committee for the go/no go interview. The supervisor of the PhD candidate stores these files on the Y-drive (Y:\staff\ggw\Datamanagement).

More information

Research integrity

Please take note of the Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity.

Also have a look at the RUG webpage on research integrity


The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) took effect on May 25th, 2018. This European law regulates data and privacy protection for all EU citizens. Everyone who collects personal data on behalf of the University of Groningen has to comply with the GDPR.

Basic information for staff about the GDPR can be found on MyUniversity.

Researchers of the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies may also process personal data in their research projects, when they do research with living human beings. In order to support you to comply with the GDPR regulations, we ask you to register your research using the form found above. This form has been equipped with a set of specific GDPR-questions. By answering these questions you will quickly gain insight into the privacy-sensitivity of your research.

You can find more information about the GDPR in relation to research at the webpage of the Research Data Office.

A Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) can help you to map the data privacy risks in the project, assess these risks, and define protection measures to eliminate or mitigate the risks. For more information on DPIAs, see this webpage.

Informed consent

In many types of research, you will need to ask for informed consent, whether in written or oral form. More information on informed consent can be found on the website of the Research Data Office.

Data management

Careful storage of the information you gather in your research is important. A Research Data Management Plan (RDMP) helps you to think about this. The Research Data Office also provides information on data management.

Last modified:03 January 2022 10.44 a.m.