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Ethical And Data-Integrity Problems In The Second Lancet Survey Of Mortality In Iraq


  • Michael Spagat


This paper considers the second Lancet survey of mortality in Iraq published in October 2006. It presents some evidence suggesting ethical violations to the survey's respondents including endangerment, privacy breaches and violations in obtaining informed consent. Breaches of minimal disclosure standards examined include non-disclosure of the survey's questionnaire, data-entry form, data matching anonymised interviewer identifications with households and sample design. The paper also presents some evidence relating to data fabrication and falsification, which falls into nine broad categories. This evidence suggests that this survey cannot be considered a reliable or valid contribution towards knowledge about the extent of mortality in Iraq since 2003. Editor's Note: The authors of the Lancet II Study were given the opportunity to reply to this article. No reply has been forthcoming.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Spagat, 2010. "Ethical And Data-Integrity Problems In The Second Lancet Survey Of Mortality In Iraq," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(1), pages 1-41.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:defpea:v:21:y:2010:i:1:p:1-41 DOI: 10.1080/10242690802496898

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    7. Jeffrey S. Simonoff, 2003. "An Empirical Study of Factors Relating to the Success of Broadway Shows," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76(1), pages 135-150, January.
    8. W. David Walls, 1997. "Increasing returns to information: evidence from the Hong Kong movie market," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(5), pages 287-290.
    9. David Maddison, 2004. "Increasing returns to information and the survival of broadway theatre productions," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(10), pages 639-643.
    10. Reynal-Querol, Marta, 2005. "Does democracy preempt civil wars?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 445-465, June.
    11. Alan B. Krueger & Jitka Maleckova, 2002. "Education, Poverty, Political Violence and Terrorism: Is There a Causal Connection?," NBER Working Papers 9074, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Michael Spagat, 2010. "Estimating the Human Costs of War: The Sample Survey Approach," HiCN Research Design Notes 14, Households in Conflict Network.


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