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1

Ethical implications

It may be difficult to guard the social impact of psychological research once it has been conducted.
Although researchers have considerable control over the methods they select and the way they treat participants, they may have little say on how their research findings are represented in the media, the impact of their work on public policy and how it may influence our perception of particular groups in society.
This amounts to a concern with the wider ethical implications of research.

2

Socially sensitive research

Some areas of research are more controversial and be subject to greater social sensitivity than others.
For example a study that examines the cognitive processes involved in long-term memory is unlikely to to have far-reaching consequences for those that take part for the broader social groups the participants represent. Research investigating the genetic basis of criminality on the other hand, might.
However it should not lead to the psychologist shying away from research that may be socially sensitive. Psychologists may have a social responsibility to carry it out.