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Ethics and Accountability in Researching Sexual Violence against Men and Boys

Researching sexual violence against men and boys in humanitarian settings requires navigating multiple ethics- and accountability-related tensions.

In January 2018, the Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC) launched the Sexual Violence Project, a three-year initiative focusing on sexual violence against displaced men and boys, including gay, bisexual, transgender and others with diverse sexual orientation and gender identity and/or expression (GBT+). The project includes, among other activities, undertaking applied exploratory research among refugees n Bangladesh, Italy and Kenya. Given the sensitivity of the research topic, the vulnerability of the research participants and the potential for harm, addressing safety and ethical issues is paramount.