The debate concerning critical scrutiny of research now unfolding in the qualitative research fields involves not only questions of data-gathering and subject-consent, but required “consent” from peers, administrative groups, funders of research, and a range of other stakeholders. Informed consent, therefore, involves and requires informing not only research subjects but a much larger set of groups with different informational needs and expectations. The trends towards expanding internationalization, multi-disciplinarity, and mixed- and multi-method approaches of research are only increasing the needs for researchers to engage in this complex epistemological, ethical, and legal potential quagmire. Rather than opposing institutionalized and formalized processes of scrutiny, qualitative researchers in Europe and Germany should embrace the possibility to engage in their design and the setting of Open Science standards for qualitative research. They can draw on the experience of quantitative researchers facing similar questions in recent decades in the call for reproducibility of research results and open access to data. This paper highlights the core challenges qualitative researchers face in an increasingly complex debate to receive informed consent from all key stakeholders in the conduct and publication of research, also touching the issues surrounding open data availability and reproducibility demands and proposes a checklist of standards for the design of institutionalized consent processes to avoid ethical check-boxing.
Because of the uncertainties surrounding the COVID-19 situation, the conference will now finally take place online only. I will be presenting a new paper, since the previously proposed paper has been already published now.