A conflict of interest is a situation in which a personal interest may compromise or bias an employee’s professional judgment and objectivity when performing research or making decisions on behalf of the university. If an individual is an employee of Mason and also has an outside financial interest in a company that has a contract or transaction with Mason, that could be a personal interest that would cause a conflict of interest. The employee would have conflicting loyalties or responsibilities, between the employee’s self-interest and the interest of Mason.
Every year, employees must complete the training and the disclosure on this website, either confirming that you do not have any personal interests that require disclosure or declaring any personal interests you do have. The types of personal interest that must be disclosed are listed in the Training section of the COI Disclosure page.
The Commonwealth of Virginia and our university’s policy require every Mason employee to disclose personal interests. If you serve, or plan to serve, on a proposal for research funding, you must also disclose significant financial interests. These are interests related to your institutional responsibilities. The Training section of the COI Disclosure page lists those that must be disclosed.