Principles

MATTER Lab Mission

Our mission is to advance our understanding and care of mental health by building, improving, and deploying technologies for use in therapy, education, and research.

Ethical Conduct in Teamwork and Research

The MATTER Lab has adopted a Code of Conduct to help guide appropriate interpersonal interactions among team members. We also follow best practices of ethical research as outlined by the National Institutes of Health:

Further Guiding Principles

In addition to the precepts above guiding ethical conduct as team members and researchers, we set forth the following as additional guiding principles to which members of the MATTER Lab strive to follow and model:

1. Do good

We strive to help others and take our greatest care to do no harm. Thus we require that our mental health research and development abide by high ethical standards. We are particularly interested in pursuing partnerships that improve the lives of children, their families, and their communities.

The Healthy Brain Network is an example of a project that we do support. This study simultaneously gathers data and conducts research to better understand mental health issues in children and adolescents, while also providing participants with a free, comprehensive mental health and learning assessment, including evaluations of physical activity, cognition, and mental health symptoms, a consultation with a licensed clinician, referrals where appropriate, and a feedback report detailing results that can be used to inform treatment and classroom instruction (504 plan/IEP).

We do not intentionally support entities that do not abide by similar principles. We strive to develop ideas, tools, and products in such a way that minimizes and discourages their abilities to harm or nonconsensually manipulate anyone. For example, we would reject a partnership opportunity that includes mental health research and development and abides by high ethical standards, but

2. Uphold integrity

We seek to promote accuracy, honesty, and truthfulness in our research and communications. These characteristics are generally accepted as necessary for the long-term effectiveness of science, and are well-covered by ethical research guidelines elsewhere. Here we wish to emphasize that to us honesty also means faithful to our mission. We build and deploy technologies not for the sheer love of building and research, but for their utility in advancing our understanding and care of mental health.

3. Be fair

We recognize that fairness and justice entitle all persons to access and benefit from our work. In service to this principle, everything we create is open source, openly licensed, designed to be widely accessible, and welcomes corrections and contributions from others. Our work must be FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable) as well as accountable.

4. Respect others

We respect the dignity and worth of all people, and the rights of individuals to privacy, confidentiality, and self-determination. We will engage patients and participants as partners in our research and development efforts, protect their privacy to the best of our ability, and vow never to engage in surveillance or surveillance capitalism with data we collect.