Professor Emeritus publishes new book on social science research ethics, integrity

February 14, 2024

Sociology emeritus faculty member, Harry Perlstadt recently published a new book: Assessing Social Science Research Ethics and Integrity: Case Studies and Essays.


Harry PerlstadtThis book discusses the development of key issues in research ethics relevant for clinical sociologists, concerning client rights to confidentiality, privacy, and informed consent. It describes the US human research protection system used by clinical and applied sociologists, through a history of research ethics, including the landmark Belmont Report and the creation of the regulatory structure of Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) in the United States. It also discusses ethical research systems in other nations like Canada, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand. The book provides a comprehensive account of controversial studies in the US, including Milgram’s Obedience to Authority, Zimbardo’s Stanford Prison Experiment, the US Public Health Service Tuskegee Syphilis Study, and analyzes how ethical concerns in these studies were or were not resolved. 

Dr. Perlstadt also served as director of the MSU Program in Bioethics, Humanities and Society.  During his career, he has had one foot in academia and one foot in applied sociology and sociological practice, evaluating health programs and initiatives for the Kellogg Foundation, USDHHS Health Resource Services Administration, and World Health Organization.  In 2010 he was a Fulbright lecturer on US health care policy and politics at Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary.