Conflicts of Interest
The key element of the GW’s Conflict of Interest policy is disclosure. Disclosure enables a review of an individual’s conflict of interest to occur in a manner that avoids conflict and allows outside activity to continue under management plans. It is not possible to eliminate all perceived, potential or real financial conflicts of interest. FCOI are not inherently bad but failure to disclose them is. When in doubt, disclose.
Conducting research with the highest scientific and ethical standards is critical in maintaining the public’s trust in the scientific process.
GW policy establishes boundaries within which conflicts of interest are tolerable and beyond which they are intolerable; processes for review of actual and apparent conflicts of interest; and appropriate mechanisms for management of tolerable conflicts of interest.
Detailed requirements are covered in Appendix C of GW’s policy (PDF).
For Public Health Service covered sponsored projects:
“A financial conflict of interest exists when the recipient's designated official(s) reasonably determines that an investigator's significant financial interest could directly and significantly affect the design, conduct, or reporting of the PHS-funded research.”
Regulations, Policy and Resources
- GW Policy: Conflicts of Interest and Commitment for Faculty and Investigators Policy
- National Institutes of Health Regulation: Responsibility of Applicants for Promoting Objectivity in Research for which Public Health Service Funding is Sought and Responsible Prospective Contractors (PDF)
- National Institutes of Health: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the Responsibility of Applicants for Promoting Objectivity in Research (2011 Revised Regulations)