CONFLICT OF INTEREST
Conflict of interest arises when a reviewer has a personal, professional or financial
reason to provide other than an objective review of an application or a proposal.
If personal or professional bias is acknowledged by a reviewer or determined to
exist by review staff; the individual is required to recuse him/herself from the
A reviewer will be considered to have financial conflict of interest if he/she
has received or could receive a direct financial benefit from an individual
or organization in relation to the application under review.
Even the appearance of conflict of interest should be avoided.
A conflict of interest may occur indirectly if an application is submitted
by a close relative or professional associate of a reviewer, or if the relative
or associate has financial dealings with an applicant. Close relatives are considered
to be parents, a spouse or domestic partner, or children. Professional associates
include colleagues with whom the reviewer engages in research, as well as other
colleagues, scientific mentors, or students with whom the reviewer has personally
worked within the past two years. If a close relative or professional associate
could receive a financial benefit as a result of a reviewer's recommendation,
this financial benefit shall be treated as the reviewer's own.
A reviewer should not be from the same institution (or any of its branches)
as the applicant, or have a "close relative" at that institution.