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Conflict of Interest

Serving community and society

To maintain public trust and confidence, Dalhousie University must act and be seen to act in accordance with its mission of serving community and society through education, research and professional service.

Generally speaking, a conflict of interest exists where there is a potential or actual divergence between the personal interests of a university member and that member’s obligation to uphold the interests and mission of the university. From a research perspective, this may involve conducting or participating in a research project that may affect one’s financial interests or those of a related business.

Dalhousie’s Senate Policy on Conflict of Interest provides guidance and procedures that must be undertaken when potential conflicts of interests arise in the conduct of research, including:

  • personal interest in research contracts
  • personal interest in the review or assessment of research
  • supervision or employment of family members in the conduct of research
  • personal interest in a research project
  • student involvement in research involving a personal interest

In some instances, there may be additional conflict of interest policy directives to be followed in order to apply for, and secure, funding. Note that any research funded by the US Public Health Service (PHS) (which includes the National Institute of Health [NIH]) must additionally adhere to Dalhousie University’s US Public Health Service Financial Conflict of Interest Policy [PDF - 92 kB]. This more strenuous policy is intended ensure that any financial conflict of interest that an investigator might have will not influence the design, conduct and reporting of research funded by the US PHS.