Ethical Dimensions in Research – Informed Consent and Female Gender in Nigeria [BOOK CHAPTER]

Ethical Dimensions in Research – Informed Consent and Female Gender in Nigeria [BOOK CHAPTER]
Olufunke Olufunsho Adegoke
Africa’s Radicalisms and Conservatisms; Brill, 15 January 2021; Chapter 17 pp 321-340
Women in any society are germane to its continual existence and development. Their contribution to development cannot be neglected and undermined. However, there is the persistence of gender inequality in many places in Africa (carried over perhaps from traditional African societies). Such inequality marginalizes the societies from the gains of development. The inequality manifests itself in many areas including in research. This chapter postulates that there has to be a re-evaluation of female gender status quo on informed consent in research. There are issues of contention which arises in the context of the local environment, spousal consent and of importance is the level of education with the contextual understanding of the informed consent in any research. It is a system of social stratification and differentiation on the basis of sex, which provides material advantages to men while simultaneously placing severe constraints on the roles and activities of women. Evidence based researches have disclosed that women are not well informed and this over shadows their judgment on appropriate decision making. This observation calls for the need of culturally competent and sensitive approaches that addresses identity specific barriers in research when designing consent forms. There is the need for gender mainstreaming in research implementation and ethical process especially informed consent. The attainment of gender equality is not only seen as an end itself and human right issues, but as a prerequisite for the achievement of sustainable development.

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