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The local Ethics Commission at Furtwangen University evaluates and examines research projects with and on humans with regard to their ethical justifiability and human dignity and issues an opinion. Only qualification theses and study projects by HFU students can be considered. This includes, in particular, research projects involving, for example, surveys, tests or observations of test subjects. Students submit the application together with their supervisor.

Excluded from consideration are medical or pharmacological research projects that fall under the provisions of the German Drug or Medical Devices Act, but not projects from the fields of epidemiology and health sciences.

Process and members

Examination process

Every researcher is always obliged to adhere to ethical standards and guidelines. However, there is no fundamental obligation to submit applications to the local HFU Ethics Committee, although ethical reviews are often required by third-party funding bodies and publication organs. The local HFU Ethics Commission is available to researchers in an advisory capacity.

The ethical evaluation of applications is based on the general guidelines of the German Society for Psychology (DGPs) and the German Society for Nursing Research, as these clearly cover the important areas and are also recognised in the scientific field. The application is initially made by means of a shortened basic questionnaire, which must be completed by each applicant. If all questions are answered with “No”, no additional application has to be submitted and the Ethics Commission confirms the ethical harmlessness of the research project after a few days. However, if one or more questions are answered with “Yes”, a detailed application must be submitted. This must also be completed in full and submitted.

The detailed applications are handled by one member of the Ethics Commission, with at least two other members being consulted for the expert opinion. All members of the commission are scientists with relevant subject-related specialisations and experience. The Ethics Commission makes a decision on the basis of the expert opinions and informs the applicant of this in a reasoned statement. The procedure from the time of application to the decision usually takes four weeks.



The term of office of the Ethics Commission is two years and begins on the first of September each year.

Chair of the Local Ethics Commission

Prof. Dr. Folker Wenzel

Members of the commission

Prof. Dr. Michael D'Agosto
Dr. Thorsten Fitzon
Prof. Dr. Gerrit Horstmeier
Prof. Dr. Dirk Koschützki
Alexander Kraus
Prof. Dr. Hanna Niemann
Prof. Dr. Robert Richter
Prof. Dr. Kirsten Steinhausen

Substitute members

Florian Braune
Prof. Dr. Katja Bremm
Prof. Dr. Meike Burger
Prof. Dr. Katja Bremm
Prof. Dr. Christophe Kunze
Prof. Dr. Erwin Scherfer
Prof. Dr. Thoman Schiepp
Dr. Michael Schlegel
Prof. Dr. Christian Weidmann