Consulting agreements (including Scientific Advisory Board member agreements and agreements for seminars, conferences, and talks) are private contracts between investigators and companies, but these agreements have to be in accord with investigators’ obligations to the University. The following sentence should appear in all consulting agreements: “Consultant is employed by The Rockefeller University, and Consultant’s obligations to the University supersede any and all provisions of this agreement.” Specific University policies that concern investigators’ obligations are referenced in the Draft Consulting Agreement.
The University does not provide legal advice to Consultants, nor does the University provide legal review of consulting agreements. Investigators enter into these agreements outside of their University functions. The University strongly recommends that investigators hire their own legal counsel to advise them of their rights and obligations under a proposed consulting agreement. The Draft Consulting Agreement is provided so that investigators may inform themselves about what might appear in such agreements.
The Rockefeller University Policy on Conflict of Interest and Commitment in Research does not permit doctoral students and postdoctoral appointees to engage in extramural activities for compensation. All other investigators may devote up to 52 days per year to external activities unless doing so would adversely affect their work for the University. Investigators are not permitted in the course of their consulting duties to assist a company in obtaining rights to any University intellectual property. See Policy at http://www.rockefeller.edu/ifcoi . After entering into each consulting agreement, investigators must review the Conflict of Interest Policy and report Significant Financial Interests subject to that Policy. The reporting form is available at http://mycoi.rockefeller.edu.