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Organizational Conflict of Interest

“Organizational Conflict of Interest” exists when multiple university relationships with sponsors create an actual or perceived conflict of interest.  Virginia Tech is treated as a single contractual entity in the federal contracting context.  Separate sponsored projects and their principal investigators are considered part of the overall Virginia Tech contracting entity.  Hence, the involvement of one faculty member in a consulting or advisory services contract with the agency may preclude a subsequent related contract from that agency based on potential concerns that there may have been access to source selection criteria or confidential information not in the public domain in advance of an RFP or procurement, or that the organization might be evaluating its own work products and hence open to charges of biased judgment, or that the preparation of specifications or statements of work might have favored the institution.  Organizational conflict of interest applies to more than one project and may affect all current or even future sponsored research with a particular federal sponsor.

Government acquisition regulations – FAR subpart 9.5