Individual Conflict of Interest/Conflict of Commitment

Message from Dr. William Destler, RIT President

In 2007 RIT approved a new Individual Conflict of Interest and Commitment (ICIC) policy designed to protect the integrity of the University, its faculty, staff, students and the scholarship process. The new policy requires all regular RIT faculty and staff to disclose potential, real, or perceived conflicts of interest or commitment annually to their immediate supervisor.

Since RIT has never had a comprehensive ICIC policy, you may ask "why now." Increasing public awareness of conflicts due to media attention has resulted in the erosion of public confidence in the integrity of institutions of higher education and research. RIT's increasing level of activity in scholarship, entrepreneurship, corporate and public interactions require that we adopt a more comprehensive ICIC policy, one that goes beyond financial transactions. It is interesting to note that most universities have already adopted such a policy or are in the process of doing so.

The new ICIC policy requires that employees submit an annual disclosure and/or a disclosure when circumstances change that may create a potential, real, or perceived conflict. However, most conflicts of interest and commitment which occur during the course of everyday business can be managed through disclosure and transparency. Most of you will not be in any form of conflict and need only answer a few questions online to comply with the policy.

It is important to emphasize that RIT encourages interactions with external entities that provide benefits to the University. The policy is not designed to inhibit such interactions.

To familiarize all University employees with the ICIC Policy and the disclosure process, training will be offered twice each year through CPD. New employees will be trained during new employee orientation.

All supervisors are expected to attend a supervisor training session. While employee training is optional for non-supervisors, I urge all employees to attend a session.

Thank you for your cooperation and support as we work together to implement this important policy in a responsible manner.