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Developing capacity to protect human research subjects in a post-conflict, resource-constrained setting: procedures and prospects
  1. S B Kennedy1,
  2. A O Harris2,
  3. E Oudemans4,
  4. L Young1,
  5. J Kollie2,
  6. E S Nelson2,
  7. R A Nisbett5,
  8. C Morris6,
  9. N Bartee3,
  10. E George-Williams7,
  11. J Jones4
  1. 1Pacific Institute for Research & Evaluation (PIRE), Louisville Center, Louisville, Kentucky, USA
  2. 2University of Liberia, Monrovia, Liberia
  3. 3Ministry of Health & Social Welfare (MOHSW), Monrovia, Liberia
  4. 4Pacific Institute for Research & Evaluation (PIRE), Calverton Office Park, Calverton, Maryland, USA
  5. 5Rice University, Houston, Texas, USA
  6. 6Cuttington University, Monrovia, Liberia
  7. 7Christian Health Association of Liberia (CHAL), Monrovia, Liberia
  1. Correspondence to:
 S B Kennedy
 Pacific Institute for Research & Evaluation (PIRE), Louisville Center, 1300 S Fourth Street, Suite 300, Louisville, KY 40208, USA; kennedy{at}


The capacity-building strategy used by a US-based research organisation, the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation (PIRE), to strengthen the system for the protection of human research subjects and the infrastructure of its international collaborating partner, the University of Liberia, are discussed. To conduct the much-needed biomedical and social science-based research-related activities in the future, this partnership is expected by PIRE to gradually evolve over time to strengthen the capacity of the local investigators and administrators of the University of Liberia. Accordingly, a unique opportunity to share technology and resources with a post-conflict, resource-constrained country is created by this partnership. This capacity-building model to strengthen the protection of human subjects in research can also be replicated in similar resource-constrained international settings and, accordingly, our experiences and limitations are shared in this paper.

  • DHHS, Department of Health and Human Services
  • IRB, institutional review board
  • NBAC, National Bioethics Advisory Commission
  • OHRP, Office for Human Research Protections
  • PIRE, Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation

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  • Competing interests: None.

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