Forming an Affiliation or Signing an Agreement with an International Organization


Be sure that your scope of work, responsibilities, deliverables, and timeline are clearly documented. If this is an external activity, ensure that no Emory facilities or resources are committed in the agreement. ORA, OGC, and other staff can review contract language to ensure that it does not inadvertently violate Emory or federal policies. For help, write to International Collaborations.

Conflicts of Commitment:

Generally, conflicts of commitment arise when a researcher's intellectual energy, time, and/or effort to external activities interferes with their required commitment of intellectual energy, time, and/or effort to Emory, even when the external activity is uncompensated. Be sure to disclose and receive approval for external affiliations from your Dean (and Chair, if applicable) beforehand and whenever there is a change in the scope, responsibilities, or expectations of the commitment. Add this activity to your annual External Activity Report. Find more information on conflict of commitment.

Sponsored Research:

Work with OSP and your RAS Unit to ensure your affiliations and financial support are properly disclosed in your grant applications and to determine whether any work performed outside the U.S. constitutes a “foreign component.” The Biosketch should represent all affiliations; Other/Current and Pending Support should disclose all financial and in-kind support, including any grants, contracts, or other awards you receive through your approved external affiliation; and for NIH awards, foreign components must be approved in advance Be aware that working on a federally-funded project outside the U.S. may constitute a “foreign component” that must be disclosed and approved by the sponsor prior to engaging in the work overseas.

Conflicts of Interest:

Conflicts of Interest (COI) in research refer to an investigator's personal financial interests and relationships with entities outside of Emory, and whether those interests or relationships significantly and directly affect the design, conduct, or reporting of a particular research project. Investigators must report significant financial interests related to their Emory duties (i.e. research, teaching, scholarly duties, and clinical) to the COI Office annually and within 30 days of receipt including honoraria and remuneration from non-US academic and research institutions. The COI Committee, not the investigator, determines whether the financial interests are related to a research project and decides when a management plan is needed. Contact the COI Office for assistance and visit COI website for additional information.

Export Controls:

Researchers should consult with the Export Control Office (ECO) prior to shipping, hand-carrying, taking, or Researchers should consult with the Export Control Office (ECO) prior to shipping, hand-carrying, taking, or transmitting items (e.g., equipment, software, data, technology, research materials) abroad to determine whether prior government approval is required. Restrictions may also prevent Emory researchers from sharing these items with non-U.S. persons while abroad. Export control regulations are complex and vary based upon the item, end-use, end-user, and destination. Violations can result in severe consequences for both the researcher and Emory and can include substantial fines and imprisonment. Contact Export Control for assistance.

Intellectual Property:

Emory owns all intellectual property (including patentable inventions, biological materials, and copyrights) developed by Emory faculty; however certain cases may be exempt. Researchers must promptly disclose all inventions they create to the Office of Technology Transfer (OTT) to determine ownership. Researchers should consult OTT or their Dean's Office prior to signing any contracts with a third-party to determine whether the contracts impacts their IP rights. Contact OTT Legal for assistance and visit the OTT Website for additional information.