A framework for ethical research in international and comparative education

Esther Mcmahon, Lizzi O. Milligan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (SciVal)


Research ethics in international and comparative education (ICE) highlights the diverse challenges that ICE researchers face in enacting ethical practice. In particular, the significant gaps between ethics presented in Western ethical guidelines and international fieldwork. Through analysis of existing guidelines and questionnaire responses from 46 BAICE members, this article demonstrates that more ethical guidance is needed to support ICE researchers. A new framework is put forward centred on five core ethical values – transparency and honesty, respect and care, conscious freedom, experiential and tacit awareness and reflexive practice – situated on an axis of universality and enacted through co-constructive dialogue. This extends the theory of relational ethics as a contemporary approach to ethics. In the context of ICE, it is hoped that this framework will provide guidance for researchers to navigate ethics in a global world, in which we find ourselves universally bound to divergence and change
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-88
Number of pages17
JournalCompare : A Journal of Comparative and International Education
Issue number1
Early online date1 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

This work was supported by the BAICE


  • Ethics
  • international and comparative education
  • research
  • values

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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