University of Illinois System


Click to view a PDF of the START myDisclosures Glossary.


For the purposes of the University Policy on Conflict of Commitment and Interest and RNUA Process, below are definitions or useful links

Academic staff member

The academic staff includes academic professionals, postdoctoral associates, and the faculty ranks of professor, associate professor, assistant professor (and all of the foregoing whose appointments contain such terms as "research," "adjunct," "visiting," or "clinical"), instructor, and lecturer.  This includes both part time or full time employees of the University.


An activity is work in which you engage outside the University for income, or an external fiduciary responsibility.

Centers for Medicare and Medcaid Services (CMS) - Open Payments

Conflict of Commitment

Exists when the external activities of an academic staff member are so substantial or demanding of the staff member's time and attention as to interfere with the individual's responsibilities to the unit to which the individual is assigned, to students, or to the university.

Conflict of Interest

Arises (a.) when an academic staff member is in a position to influence either directly or indirectly university business, research, or other decisions in ways that could lead to gain for the staff member, his/her immediate family, or any third party to the detriment of the university's integrity and its missions of teaching, research, economic development, and public service, or (b.) when an academic staff member desires to acquire a contract (outside of employment) to provide goods or services to the university.

Conflict Review Committee (CRC)

Advisory committee to the responsible official on each campus (UIUC/UIC, Vice Chancellor for Research; UIS, Provost; UA, President or Vice President for Research).

Contract period

Defined by the Notice of Appointment (NOA).  The contract period includes evenings, weekends, and holidays during the term of employment.

Directly involved (with non-University entity research)

Serve as investigator, co-investigator, or senior/key research personnel.

Educational Institution

Educational organizations can be either for-profit or not-for-profit.  If you do not know whether the organization is for-profit or not-for-profit, then select "privately-held" entity when indicating the level of financial interest for the entity.


The company or organization with which you conduct your outside activity; in which you have a financial interest; OR the circumstances surrounding your outside activity (e.g., "self-employeed" or "free lance").

Entity-related research

References to “entity-related research” should be interpreted broadly; consider any sort of formalized activity, even if not officially “sponsored research.”  This includes subcontracts to Entity from University, subcontracts to University from Entity, or any other relationships involving the transfer of funds, goods, or services.


Reflects percent ownership (stock, membership interest or other forms of equity interest in the Company [e.g., options, warrants or other rights convertible or exercisable for stock or other forms of securities]), regardless of dollar value.

Facilities Use Agreement

The University Policy states that University resources may not be used for non-university activities without permission from the university. Use is prohibited unless explicitly approved. Only agreements that have been approved by the University's Chief Financial Officer are considered to be acceptable. Examples of acceptable agreements include sponsored research agreements executed by the campus Office for Sponsored Research; and contracts executed by the Office for Business and Financial Services.


Someone with a fiduciary role has a legal interest to act in the best interest of an entity or individual.

Financial Interest

Compensation or value of ownership interest.

Immediate Family

Includes one's spouse or domestic partner, parents, siblings, and children.

Institution number

Sometimes referred to as Proposal Approval Form (PAF), Proposal Transmittal Form (PTF), or Illinois Contract System (ICS) number.  If you don't know this number, use the START myResearch PI Portal, available at:

Intellectual property (IP)

IP is broadly defined to include inventions, discoveries, know-how, show-how, processes, unique materials, copyrightable works, original data and other creative or artistic works which have value.


Any person who is responsible for the design, conduct, or reporting of research.

Non-conflicted Point of Contact

A non-conflicted individual is someone who is not overseen by the discloser and who does not have an interest with the named entity.  Persons who fill this role are usually the director of graduate studies, the Student Advisory Committee chair, or the department head.

Non-University Affiliate

Someone who is not an employee of the University of Illinois

Notice of Appointment (NOA)

Off campus

University research parks and business incubator are considered to be off campus.

Open Payments

Organizations that apply PHS regulations


PI Portal

Related to your University research, scholarly expertise, or responsibilities

For example: Does the entity sponsor your University research?  Do you evaluate the entity's products or services in your University research?

Research activities (with non-University entity)

Include writing proposals, design, conduct, testing, modeling, analyzing, and reporting, etc. on behalf of the non-University entity.

Unit Executive Officer (UEO)

The department head/chair or equivalent office of other units. For conflicts involving a unit executive officer, the term refers to the administrator at the next higher level in the normal reporting lines.

University Policy on Conflict of Commitment and Interest

University resources

Includes space, supplies, equipment, intellectual property, students, and personnel.