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There are certain conflicts of interest situations that must be avoided by ASU faculty and staff. These situations are prescribed by Arizona law.
This content addresses:
For Researchers: Research and Sponsored Projects Manual, RSP 206, "Objectivity in Research—Disclosure of Financial Interests and Management of Conflicts of Interest."
Questions? Contact OGC.
Arizona's conflict of interest statutes apply to "all public officers and employees ... of the State," which includes all ASU employees. Consequently, it is the responsibility of each ASU faculty and staff member:
Yes. Violation of the conflicts of interest rules may result in employee discipline, dismissal, or criminal prosecution.
Refer to Rule One (A.R.S. § 38-503 A and B) in the Academic Affairs Manual—ACD 204–08, "Conflict of Interest."
Note: This rule is complex due to very broad definitions of "relative" and "substantial interest." (Refer to and review the complete list of definitions in the policy.) For example, regarding "pecuniary interest," if the ASU employee "moonlights" for an employer that is about to enter into a transaction with ASU, the ASU employee has a monetary interest because the ASU employee earns compensation from the company. Likewise, if an ASU employee's spouse or other relative works for an employer that is about to enter into a transaction with ASU, the spouse or relative has a monetary interest in the transaction because the spouse or relative receives compensation from the employer.
Refer to the following in the Academic Affairs Manual—ACD 204–08, "Conflict of Interest":
Yes. These rules are not mutually exclusive. More than one may apply in any situation. The conduct of the ASU employee must comply with each applicable rule.
Yes. All ASU researchers, regardless of whether the potential conflict of interest originates with the research being conducted, must file disclosure of substantial interest with the Office of Research Integrity and Assurance.
Researchers are also responsible for, and subject to, the policy pertaining to researchers in the Research and Sponsored Projects Manual, RSP 206, "Objectivity in Research—Disclosure of Financial Interests and Management of Conflicts of Interest."
Yes. If an ASU employee desires to work for another Arizona public entity, the ASU faculty member or other employee should consider the application of the Arizona conflicts of interest laws in two respects:
Yes. An ASU employee may do business with ASU, but must follow standard policies and procedures. Refer to Rule Two (A.R.S. § 38-503 C) in the Academic Affairs Manual—ACD 204-08, "Conflict of Interest.
Yes. The standard rule applies. The employee must complete and file a disclosure of substantial interest form. In addition, the employee must not participate in the decision-making process.
The ASU employee must file the Disclosure of Substantial Interest form before ASU enters into the contract, makes the purchase or sale, receives the service or before ASU makes the decision.
In many cases, the ASU employee will not know precisely when ASU is about to enter into a contract, make a purchase or sale, receive a service, or make a decision. Therefore, it is a good idea for the ASU employee to file the disclosure form as soon as awareness of the substantial interest becomes apparent.
A literal reading of the statute says that if an ASU employee or a relative of an ASU employee has a substantial interest in a contract with, sale to, purchase from, service for, or decision by ASU, the employee is required to file a Disclosure of Substantial Interest form. This is regardless of whether the employee or the employee's unit is involved in the contract, purchase, sale, service, or decision. The employee and the employee’s unit may be far removed from the ASU decision-making process.
The ASU employee with the substantial interest must adhere to the requirement "not to participate in the contract, purchase, sale, or decision." Generally, an ASU employee is consdiered to be participating in the contract, purchase, sale or decision, if the ASU employee does any of the following:
However, generally, the following are not be considered by ASU as "participating in the contract, purchase, sale, or decision":
The ASU employee who reported the substantial interest may not make the decision or handle the contract, purchase, or sale. These actions should be done by another person who has authority to do them.
All ASU employees must file disclosure of substantial interest. Most ASU employees will be filing with the Office of General Counsel.
Note: All ASU researchers, regardless of whether the potential conflict of interest originates with the research being conducted, must file disclosure of substantial interest with the Office of Research Integrity and Assurance.
Each ASU employee is under a continuing obligation to keep his or her disclosures of substantial interests current. Accordingly, an ASU employee should file a corrected or updated Disclosure of Substantial Interest form with the ASU Office of General Counsel, or the Office of Research Integrity and Assurance, whenever information relevant to his or her disclosure changes. If an employee’s substantial interest ceases to exist, the employee should notify the ASU Office of General Counsel (or if the employee is a researcher, notify the Office of Research Integrity and Assurance) in writing so that ASU may note that in its records.
Note: Each Disclosure of Substantial Interest form is a public record of ASU and, as such, is available for public inspection upon request.