What is a Conflict of Interest?     What is a Research Conflict of Interest?


Conflict of Interest

A conflict of interest (COI) develops when a person's activities or interests could adversely affect their professional judgment as they perform their OSU-affiliated work.

The existence of a perceived, potential, or actual conflict of interest does not necessarily mean that the conflict will result in bias, or adversely influence a person's work. However, it does increase the risk that a person will not recognize or promptly mitigate bias that could stem from the influence(s) that their additional activities and interests can impose upon them.


Research Conflict of Interest

A research COI (RCOI) develops if a person's external financial interest(s) are related to their research or related responsibilities at the university. If this type of relationship exists, it could conceivably impact the objectivity of their research program, the safety and welfare of research subjects, or the academic interests of their students and trainees. A conflict of interest may also arise if an external financial interest has the potential to affect a person's university responsibilities that are adjacent to research, such as teaching, service, or administrative duties.


RCOI Program Goals

  • Promote objectivity and integrity across OSU-affiliated research and activities
  • Protect the public's trust in research and integrity at OSU
  • Comply with federal regulations and requirements for research funding, oversight, and publication
  • Communicate clear disclosure guidelines, and identify actual, potential, and perceived conflicts of interest
  • Create an environment that allows individuals to feel comfortable communicating with the RCOI Program Office


Expectations for Active Investigators:

  • Promote research objectivity and integrity at OSU by following the Policy on Financial Conflicts of Interest in Research.
  • Complete two basic requirements within 30 days of qualification as an active Investigator:
    • the research COI training course, available online in CITI
      • a CITI Guide to Getting Started is available for the OSU community here
      • once completed, this course doesn't expire for 4 years
    • the research-based COI disclosure form in Cayuse Platform.

See also: Checklist for Incoming Faculty and Researchers

  • Ensure your research-based COI disclosure information remains current in Cayuse Platform. As an active Investigator, you must review and update your research COI disclosure:
  • Ensure your research COI training course in CITI remains current.  As an active Investigator, you must ensure that you complete the COI course at least once every four years.
  • Communicate with the RCOI Program office when any questions arise.  See contact information below or email COI@oregonstate.edu.

Research COI Program Staff


Rebecca Henry
Office: 541-737-2762
Email: COI@oregonstate.edu