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Policy 7.13
Policy for Consideration of Controversial Funding Offers

Responsible Official: VP for Research Administration
Administering Division/Department: Sponsored Programs
Effective Date: May 07, 2007
Last Revision: May 07, 2007

Policy Sections:


This policy addresses factors to be considered when evaluating whether to seek funding offers from companies or for projects that may prove controversial or inappropriate.


This document applies to all faculty, staff and students at Emory University.

Policy Details

Emory University regularly seeks and receives offers of funding for the purpose of research sponsorship endowment creation or support (restricted or unrestricted), conference, lecture or performance sponsorship, sponsorship of athletics, improvement of physical facilities, acquisition of equipment or collections, and the like. In considering whether to seek or accept funding from sources or for projects which might prove controversial or inappropriate, certain factors should be considered. Those factors include:

  • Any consideration of academic freedom;
  • The connection between the purpose of the funding and the nature of the source;
  • The balance between any potential societal benefit in the purpose of the funding and any societal harm;
  • The benefit to the University community in the purpose of the funding versus the effect of receipt on the reputation of the University, the School or the faculty;
  • The appearance of an organization promoting a commercial purpose on the Emory campus;
  • The effect on future fundraising or recruitment;
  • Whether criminal conduct or fraud has been committed by the sponsor;
  • Accepted national and community practices with respect to applying for and accepting funding from the source for the same or similar purposes; and
  • Any issues of safety, order and discipline within the University community.

Issues of whether such funding should be applied for or accepted shall be referred to the Dean or Director for decision. In the Health Sciences Center any disagreements which result from the decision should first be referred to the Executive Vice President for Health Affairs for resolution. Outside of the Health Sciences Center, any disagreements which result from such a decision may be referred for resolution to a committee consisting of the Provost, the Vice President for Institutional Advancement and the Vice President for Research.


Related Links

Contact Information

Clarification of this policy.  Office of Sponsored Programs  404-727-0551  kpeluso@emory.edu 

Revision History

No previous versions of this policy were found.