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Research Conflict of Interest (RCOI) Program

Overview

In order to promote research objectivity, the RCOI Program assesses and implements management strategies for Investigator financial conflicts of interest in research.  The program also administers the university-wide Disclosure and Management System.

A summary of Investigator requirements can be found below. See the Disclosure Guidance & Requirements site for guidance pertaining to other circumstances requiring disclosure using the Disclosure and Management System as well as additional guidance for Investigators.

Investigators on Sponsored Research Projects

The term “Investigator” includes the PI, project director, co-I, and any other person with a similar level of responsibility for the design, conduct, or reporting of sponsored research. The RCOI Program will notify you if you meet the definition of an Investigator.

Investigators must disclose the following significant financial interests held in the past 12 months that are reasonably related to their institutional responsibilities:

  • For a single publicly traded entity, payments and equity value (determined through public prices) ˃$5,000 in total or
  • For a single non-publicly traded entity, payments ˃$5,000 or any equity interest.

Financial interests are disclosed in the context of the Investigator, their spouse, and their dependent children (i.e., the Investigator's immediate family members).

Investigators must take research COI training every four years. Virginia Tech utilizes the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative Program (CITI) for research COI training. Although the content is PHS/HHS-specific, Virginia Tech applies the same disclosure and management principles to all sponsored research, regardless of sponsor.

Other Stakeholders

There are many disclosure and COI stakeholders across the university. Contact the RCOI Program at coi@vt.edu with questions about Investigators, financial interests related to sponsored research and sponsored projects, or technical concerns involving the Disclosure and Management System. 

  • Contact your department head or supervisor (faculty) or your supervisor or HR (staff) with questions about additional work commitments outside your primary Virginia Tech appointment.
  • HR maintains the list of certain employees required to disclose to the Commonwealth of Virginia (i.e., the Statement of Economic Interests). HR will contact you if this disclosure requirement applies to you.
  • Contact Procurement at procurement@vt.edu with questions about financial interests related to purchasing contracts/transactions.