Administrative Head of Unit


COI Committee

Conflict of Commitment

Conflict of Interest

Executive Position

Faculty Member

Financial Interest

Initial Reviewer

Non-University Activity

Outside Professional Activity

Related Party

UBC Person


“Administrative Head of Unit” means a Director of a service unit, a Head of an academic department, a Director of a centre, institute or school, a Principal of a college, a Dean, an Associate Vice-President, the Registrar, the University Librarian, a Vice-President or the President or the equivalent.

“Business” means a corporation, partnership, sole proprietorship, firm, franchise, association, organization, holding company, joint stock company, receivership, business or real estate trust, or other legal entity organized for profit or charitable purposes, but excluding the University, an affiliated Hospital, a private medical practice, or other entity controlled by, controlling, or under common control with the University or an affiliated Hospital.

“COI Committee” means a committee established by the University Counsel to carry out the roles set out in Section 7 of this Policy, and which includes at least one independent person who is neither a Faculty Member nor a staff member of the University.

“Conflict of Commitment” occurs where a UBC Person engages in Non-University Activities that are substantial or demanding of the UBC Person’s time and attention and adversely affect the discharge of the UBC Person’s responsibilities to the University. UBC Persons must disclose Conflicts of Commitment and obtain written approval prior to engaging in any activity that may give rise to a Conflict of Commitment.

“Conflict of Interest” means a situation in which a UBC Person, or his or her Related Party(ies), has a personal interest that conflicts or could conflict with the UBC Person’s obligations to the University. Please note:

  • The existence of a Conflict of Interest involves two elements: the UBC Person’s or a Related Party’s personal interest(s), and the UBC Person’s obligations to the University. Personal interests may include business, commercial or financial interests, as well as personal matters and career interests. A UBC Person’s obligation to the University is to act in the University’s interests, which includes acting in support of the University’s integrity and fundamental mission and avoiding circumstances that may undermine public confidence and trust. The University has many diverse objectives, which include many supporting commitments, goals and actions. From time to time these objectives, commitments, goals and actions may appear to be, or may actually be in conflict with one another.  In such cases, the University’s overriding interest is that its activities are undertaken with integrity and in accordance with the highest ethical standards.
  • Conflicts of Interest may be actual or potential.
    • An actual Conflict of Interest is a situation where the personal interest actually conflicts with the UBC Person’s obligations to the University.
    • A potential Conflict of Interest is a situation where the personal interest has not yet conflicted with the UBC Person’s obligations to the University, but might be expected to.

“Executive Position” means any position that includes responsibilities for a material function of the operation or management of a Business.

“Faculty Member” means, for the purposes of this Policy, a person employed by the University as a professor, associate professor, assistant professor, professor of teaching, clinical professor, clinical associate professor, clinical assistant professor, clinical instructor, instructor I, instructor II, senior instructor, twelve-month lecturer, or in an equivalent position designated by the applicable senate.

“Financial Interest” means having or having the expectation to receive:

  • greater than a 5% ownership interest in a single entity; or
  • anything with a monetary value exceeding $5,000 in any one calendar year, including remuneration (e.g. salary, consulting fees, retainers, honoraria, bonuses, gifts, speaker’s fees, advisory board remuneration, finders or recruitment fees), equity interests (e.g. stocks, stock options or other ownership interests), and intellectual property rights (e.g. patents, copyrights, royalties or other payments from such rights).

“Initial Reviewer” means the individual responsible for initially reviewing a UBC Person’s disclosures of Conflicts of Interest and perceived Conflicts of Interest or approving a UBC Person’s Conflicts of Commitment. Except as otherwise designated by the University Counsel, a UBC Person’s Initial Reviewer is the Administrative Head of Unit in which that UBC person holds his or her primary appointment.

“Non-University Activity” means any activity outside a UBC Person’s scope of work with the University and includes Outside Professional Activities.

“Outside Professional Activity” means any activity outside a UBC Person’s scope of work with the University that involves the same specialized skill and knowledge that the UBC Person utilizes in his or her work with the University and includes the operation of a Business, consulting or advisory services, external teaching, external academic appointments and external speaking engagements.

“Related Party” means a UBC Person’s immediate family member (e.g. spouse, partner, child, parent or sibling), or other person living in the same household, any other person with whom the UBC Person shares a Financial Interest, either directly or indirectly, or any entity in which the UBC Person has an ownership interest of more than 5%.

“UBC Person” means full-time and part-time Faculty Members and staff members of the University, and any other person who teaches, conducts research, or works at or under the auspices of the University (including but not limited to students, adjunct and sessional faculty, librarians, program directors, post-doctoral fellows, emeriti and those holding a visiting appointment).


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Office of the University Counsel
6328 Memorial Road,
Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z2, Canada
Tel: (604) 822-1897
Fax: (604) 822-8731

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