Task 5d: Ethical Dimensions of Inquiry

I have been talking non-stop to anyone who'll listen about my intended inquiry, and have brought up the issue of Ethical Practice with my professional network. We have discussed it at length and the following is my conclusion on the best way to ensure adherence to ethical standards.

One dimension I am proposing for my inquiry is audience interviews. Post-show I would like to be able to conduct interviews with audience members, asking a series of questions regarding their engagement with the production: their initial thoughts and reactions, immediately after the moment of viewing.

Image Source: mrmediatraining.com

I also intend to speak with theatre directors, producers and playwrights, to determine the level of engagement they may expect from a play or production, to see whether the actual level of engagement, or the interpretation of a play by the audience, is what was expected. This will be interesting as audiences bring their own experience and bias to a show, so the message received by one viewer may be completely different to another.

For this I have created consent forms for the participants to sign, with my contact details and the details of my inquiry clearly printed, so that those I speak to are actively aware of ways in which their information will be used. A copy of this form will be kept by both parties (myself and the participant) in order to follow ethical practice.

First Draft of Consent Form

The information will be stored safely: hard-copy consent forms will be kept in a folder, and any audio-visual information will be stored on a memory stick or external hard-drive that will remain with the hard-copy information at all times. Until such time as may become necessary, the information will not leave the safe location in order to ensure privacy at all stages of the enquiry process.

I am currently doing an internship at The Finborough Theatre, and have been given permission to carry out my research at this location. This will be shown on my Employer Support form and at all stages I will comply with the rules, regulations and standards of the theatre's code of conduct.


  1. Interesting - I went to the Finsborough for Fen http://www.finboroughtheatre.co.uk/productions/2011/production-fen.php - Wendy was in it - story from Norfolk - but would like to return as it was a great venue and had a lot of character!
    It would be good to have a tutorial to catch up on planning Dani - get in touch and we can arrange it. Sessions also next week! Planning for audience response a bit tricky - but if it is in your role already - then it sounds like it would be a part of your job - good to involve management as their job is to look after you.

    1. I've spoken with the management a few times, and they're really interested in this element of research: as they're focused on programming challenging, provocative works, it would be good for them too to understand the reactions from the audiences, above and beyond reviews that appear in newspapers or on the occasional blog.
      Some of the work there is really interesting - Chicken Dust has just closed, but it would have been a really interesting one to include in a research project as it was concerned with the human and ethical cost of the demand for cheap meat. Hopefully there will be similarly provocative works on while I'm in the research phase of the inquiry!


Post a Comment

Popular Posts