These webpages are intended to provide guidance to employees regarding conflict of interest and conflict of commitment. In all cases where the might appear to be a conflict between information provided here and the University Collected Rules and Regulations (CRR), those CRR, and specifically 330.015, 410.020 and 420.030 shall be deemed controlling in all circumstances.
Conflict of Interest
“Employees shall faithfully discharge their duties and shall refrain from knowingly engaging in any outside matters of financial interest or commitment incompatible with the impartial, objective and effective performance of their University Responsibilities and in the conduct of University affairs. They shall not realize personal gain in any form which would influence improperly the conduct of their University Responsibilities. They shall not improperly use University property, funds, confidential or proprietary information, students, position or power for personal or political gain. They shall inform their chairpersons/supervisors in writing of their Outside Interests. Compliance with this policy promotes objectivity in research by establishing standards that provide a reasonable expectation that the proposal, design, conduct and reporting of research will be free from bias resulting from Employee conflicts of interest.”
The committee formed at the campus level responsible for reviewing and mitigating complicated disclosures, determining what conditions or restrictions are necessary, reviewing cases of non-compliance, and recommending sanctions as appropriate. The committee is comprised of members appointed by the Provost in consultation with the appropriate dean.
CRR 3330.015(F) states:
‘Each Campus Shall:
- Establish a committee to coordinate the solicitation and review of disclosures of Outside Interests from each Employee, including development of campus specific standards and procedures, determine whether a conflict of interest exists, and determine what conditions or restrictions, if any, should be imposed by the campus to Manage such conflict of interest, resolve problems revealed, and enforce sanctions as appropriate, including adoption of a Conflict of Interest Management Plan.
- Comply with all laws and regulations regarding conflict of interest, including the provision of initial and ongoing financial conflict of interest reports to the Public Health Service (PHS) as required pursuant to 42 C.F.R. Part 50 Subpart F and 45 C.F.R. Part 95.
- Develop and publish corresponding procedures to support implementation of this policy and any other related laws or regulations regarding conflict of interest. Such procedures shall include, at a minimum, requirements for exempt staff and faculty Employees to submit annual reports disclosing all Outside Interests or verifying the absence of any Outside Interests (except to the extent that a campus may adopt alternative procedures for adjunct faculty as provided in Section 330.015.E).’
A COI is typically managed with conditions and notifications. Conditions provide active management of the relationship by supervisors, contracting offices, IRB or other offices to ensure university policies are followed. Notifications provide information and policies for the employee to follow to manage the relationship. Complex cases may require other strategies. Only the full COI Committee can determine a conflict of interest cannot be managed. The supervisor/chair and dean/director cannot overturn the COI Committee’s determination of an unmanageable Conflict of Interest.
Conflict of Commitment
CRR 330.015 (A)(2) states “Employees shall faithfully discharge their duties and shall refrain from knowingly engaging in any outside matters of financial interest or commitment incompatible with the impartial, objective, and effective performance of their University Responsibilities and in the conduct of University affairs.’
A conflict of commitment (“COC”) occurs when an employee engages in an outside activity, paid or unpaid, that involves a commitment of time that may interfere, or appear to interfere, with fulfillment of the employee’s obligations to the University, even if the outside activity is valuable to the University or contributes to the employee’s professional development and competence.
To better understand what is required to be reported for conflict of commitment see section 2 of the COI/COC form by logging into eCompliance at https://ecompliance.missouri.edu/login.
The supervisor/chair and dean/director oversee and manage potential conflicts of commitment. Most activities are approved. If a supervisor/chair and or dean/director determines a COC is unmanageable, they will work with the employee to find a solution. Should attempts to resolve unmanageable COC fail, procedures set forth in University of Missouri Collected Rules and Regulations 370.010 or 380.010, may be followed.
The COI Committee generally does not weigh in on commitment concerns and does not overturn a supervisor’s determination of an unmanageable COC. COCs that are determined to also be a COI are forwarded to the Committee for review and appropriate action.