I have a PhD in Cultural Studies and did ethnographic work as part of my dissertation (completed in 2006). Recently I have developed an interest in doing ethnographic research at an area church. However, I teach at a community college that is not a research institution and does not have an IRB per se. (It has a board that reviews projects for the protection of students, but not the protection of human
subjects outside of the school.) Under these circumstances, how can I conscientiously and ethically design my research at the church?
Does anyone out there have any insight into how other independent scholars have addressed this issue?