Campus Statement on Foreign Influence - December 2019

The U.S. Government continues to express growing concerns regarding the influence of foreign governments and entities over federally-funded research. In particular, the federal government is focused on the failure or alleged failure of some federally-funded researchers to adequately disclose their relationships with foreign entities. Failure to adequately disclose these relationships may jeopardize a researcher’s eligibility to obtain future funding.1

The university recognizes that theft of ideas and intellectual property is a national concern. We also recognize the critical importance of the collaborative process in advancing new knowledge and discovery. Protecting that process is contingent upon our historical commitment to both academic freedom and ensuring the success and well-being of every member of our community regardless of group identity.

To balance both governmental concerns and our institutional commitment to ensuring a collaborative research environment, the Office of Research and Engagement conducts thorough compliance and training programs and has implemented an administrative system to manage sponsored research programs, and protect against foreign interference, influence, and theft of research and the resulting discoveries.

Consistent with these existing compliance protocols, researchers are encouraged to communicate with the Office of Research Compliance to disclose any relationships with foreign entities. By ensuring our research enterprise remains transparent and meets all applicable requirements, university officials are positioned to protect our institutional commitment to academic freedom, research collaboration, and knowledge advancement and discovery.

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1 From Memo: Chief Research Officers, Andrew Karberg, University of Massachusetts, Associate Counsel, July 12, 2019 RE: Foreign Influence Disclosure Guidance for Federally Funded Research.

Posted 12/5/19

For more, see: Foreign Influence Disclosure Guidance