Conducting psychosocial research on the International Space Station (ISS) requires rigorous privacy precautions that exceed standard scientific human subject protocols. In our previous study involving crewmembers on Mir, and in our ongoing ISS work, special precautions were taken during each phase of the missions. Pre-flight, participants received detailed consent forms explaining that only group-level data would be presented, and they chose ID codes known only to them. In-flight, special procedures protected data during collection and transmission. Post-flight, our analytic strategy further masked participants’ identities, and participant representatives were invited to review manuscript drafts prior to publication. In this paper we describe lessons learned during our on-orbit studies and discuss their relation to maintaining privacy on studies of future long-duration space missions.
Ritsher, Jennifer Boyd; Kanas, Nick; and Saylor, Stephanie
"Maintaining Privacy During Psychosocial Research on the International Space Station,"
Journal of Human Performance in Extreme Environments:
1, Article 3.