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Externally Sponsored Graduate Research Procedures

Category Research
Type Procedure
Approved by Council, 14 November 1995
Date Procedure Took Effect 1 January 1996
Last Approved Revision 1 March 2010
Sponsor Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise)
Responsible Officer Dean, Grduate Research School
Review Date 1 March 2015

Purpose

The Vice-Chancellor has stated in his strategic vision for the University of Otago that the long range goal is to have 20 percent of enrolment at the graduate level. This goal has been further elaborated in the objectives of the University where priority is given to the representation of the University's research outputs to government and business as appropriate and to the improvement of the external research funding base of the University. In anticipation of this increased research funding from external sources it is necessary to have procedures in place for acceptance of grants to protect the integrity of the University and the interests of students.

These procedures have been approved as appropriate to protect the interests of students involved in externally-funded or externally-supported projects.

Organisational Scope

These Procedures apply to all staff and students who are engaged in, or plan to undertake, externally sponsored graduate research.

Policy Content

The University researchers must be able to publish and make presentations on the results of their research including externally sponsored research. Notwithstanding this need, the University recognises that, in some research programmes, a requirement for a delay in publication of results in the open literature and/or to make special arrangements for the secure examination of a thesis may be necessary to protect the commercial interests of the Sponsor and the University. In such cases the following procedures should be followed:

(a) The student(s) should be fully informed in writing prior to their acceptance of the thesis topic of any agreement into which the University has entered and which may restrict their publication rights.

(b) If the student is an employee of an organisation which, by virtue of this relationship, may claim ownership of some or all of the research findings, there shall be a formal agreement between the University and the Employer to the effect that the student will have the right to present his or her thesis with their personal interpretation and use of the data and results. The conditions allowing secure examination may apply.

(c) Only in exceptional circumstances will the normal thesis examination procedures be modified. In these exceptional circumstances the University will arrange for commercial-in-confidence agreements to be completed by all prospective examiners before receiving the thesis for examination.

(d) The delay in publication will be formally agreed in the following or similar manner:

The Sponsor recognises that, under University policy, the results of the University Project must be publishable and agrees that Researchers engaged in Project shall be permitted to present at symposia, national, or regional professional meetings, and to publish in journals, theses or dissertations, or otherwise of their own choosing, methods and results of Project, provided, however, that Sponsor shall have been furnished copies of any proposed publication at least [_____] months in advance of the submission of such proposed publication or presentation to a journal, editor, or other third party. Sponsor shall have [____] months, after receipt of said copies, to object to such proposed presentation or proposed publication on the basis that there is patentable subject matter which needs protection. In the event that Sponsor makes such objection, said Researcher(s) shall refrain from making such publication or presentation for a maximum of [____] months from date of receipt of such objection in order for University to file patent application(s) with the Patent and Trademark Office and/or foreign patent office(s) directed to the patentable subject matter contained in the proposed publication or presentation.

(e) Access to the thesis in the University Library may be restricted for a period of time to persons designated by the University supervisor in agreement with the Head of Department.

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