In research design, anonymity refers to the concept of removing identifying features and characteristics to make the source of information unknown. The concept requires that the receiver of information is left without clues to the identity of the source because the typical identifying information is removed. This anonymity process can be completed by the sender or the source of the information. Anonymity is typically required or requested in cases where knowing the identity of the source would change the results of a study, change the treatment of the information, or change the use of any analysis. This entry discusses factors that can be used to identify research participants, the purpose of anonymity in research, how individuals’ perceptions of anonymity can affect behavior, and anonymity in ...

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