UofT Statement of Conflict of Interest and Conflict of Commitment

                                                        PDAD&C #27, 2006-07



TO: Principals, Deans, Academic Directors & Chairs              
FROM: John R. G. Challis, Vice-President, Research and Associate Provost
DATE: November 9th, 2006
RE: University of Toronto Statement on Conflict of Interest and Conflict of Commitment

The University’s memorandum of understanding with the Tri-Councils (Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada) codifies, clarifies and harmonizes the roles and responsibilities of the Agencies and of recipient institutions in the management of federal grants and awards. The Tri-Councils now wish to address conflicts of interest in the memorandum of understanding and to engage the institutions in further development of policies and procedures.

The Tri-Councils are moving toward more specific and encompassing policies and procedures to identify and manage conflicts of interest for individuals at the institutions. In particular, it is expected that the Tri-Council memorandum of understanding will require institutional policies to encompass all researchers, whether funded or unfunded, including certain persons and activities not within the scope of the University’s current conflict of interest policies.

The COI Statement affirms the University’s current policies and procedures and will form the background for further consultation and the introduction of revised institutional conflict of interest policies that are responsive to the policies of the Tri-Councils, taking the following into account:

  • respect for the fundamental values of the University and its community
  • scope of application within the University community
  • articulation of clear principles to identify conflicts of interest and commitment
  • effective measures for disclosing and managing conflicts
  • the identification and management institutional conflicts as the complexity of institutional relationships grows
  • appropriate consistency between University policies and those of our affiliated institutions and funding partners

The COI Statement does not amend existing University policies and guidelines.

Please send your comments regarding the draft statement to me (vp.research@utoronto.ca) by November 30, 2006.