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Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) and Outside Activities

As relationships between academia and private industry continue to grow, it is essential that financial and other relationships with external and internal entities do not create situations that may seem to be in conflict with the values of free and unbiased scientific inquiry.

Statutory Requirements

Florida law requires that all state university employees "engaged in the design, conduct, or reporting of research" must disclose any and all outside activities and conflicts of interests. Pursuant to 1012.977 (FS), any such state university employee who fails to disclose such activities "shall be suspended without pay pending the outcome of an investigation which shall not exceed 60 days. Upon conclusion of the investigation, the university or entity may terminate the contract of the employee."

Significant Financial Conflict of Interest Disclosure

To comply with federal requirements, all Investigators (as defined below) who apply for, or work on, a federally-funded grant/project funded by an entity that has adopted the Public Health Service (PHS) requirements must:

  1. complete the online Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) tutorial
  2. forward the associated FCOI training Certificate of Completion with your name and date completed included on the certificate to
  3. complete and submit the Financial COI Disclosure Dynamic Form

The Public Health Service (PHS) requires grantees to manage any actual or potential conflict of interest that may be presented by compensated outside activities and other financial interests of Investigators (as defined below) involved in sponsored research projects funded by PHS. In addition, several non-federal sponsors that have adopted this policy as their own, for example, American Heart Association. The primary purpose of the federal regulations is to prevent bias in the design, conduct, or reporting of research projects. Investigators working on projects funded by these various granting agencies must abide by these requirements.

“Investigator” is defined as the Principal Investigator, Co-Principal Investigator, or any other person responsible for the design, conduct, or reporting of the research or educational activities. “Investigator” for the purposes of determining a “Significant Financial Interest” includes the Investigator’s spouse and dependent children.

“Significant Financial Interest” is one or more of the following financial interests of the Investigator that reasonably appears to be related to the Investigator’s institutional responsibilities. A Significant Financial Interest does not include salary, royalties, or other remuneration paid by the Institution to an Investigator; income from seminars, lectures, or teaching engagements sponsored by a federal, state, or local government agency, or an institution of higher education; or income from service on advisory committees or review panels for a federal, state, or local government agency, or an institution of higher education.

Outside Activity

All University of West Florida personnel and resources must be used for the promotion of the mission of the University and the public interest. AC-11.02 - 05/13 Conflicts of Interest Policy establishes safeguards to prevent employees and other University-related individuals from using their positions or relationships with the University for purposes that are or appear to be in conflict with professional conduct; University responsibilities, duties, and activities; or the University's interests. 

Form- UWF Outside Activity - All employees engaging in outside activities requiring disclosure must complete this Outside Activity and Conflict of Interest form.