Conflict of interest policy
Intent and objectives
This policy outlines the principles applying to the declaration and management of actual and potential conflict of interest.
The objectives of this policy are:
- to protect the University’s interest in impartial and objective decision making
- to protect the reputation of the University by maintaining ethical standards of good judgement, fairness and integrity in all its dealings
- to ensure that employees always observe the highest standard of business ethics
- to avoid any activity or interest that might reflect unfavourably upon a staff member’s own integrity and good name, or upon the integrity and good name of the University
The policy applies to all staff employed by the University, including continuing, fixed term, full time, part time, and casual staff. However, casual staff are not required to seek approval to engage in outside employment under the Outside Activities policy. This policy also applies to external appointees of boards and committees.
All staff members performing University duties are required to act in good faith towards the University.
Staff members must ensure there is no conflict of interest between their personal interests and their duties, obligations and responsibilities to the University. Where such a conflict occurs, the interests of the University will be balanced against the interests of the staff member. Unless exceptional circumstances exist the balance of interests will be resolved in favor of the University.
Conflict of interest can be financial or personal and involves the interests of a staff member or members of the staff member’s family or friends.
Of their own volition staff must disclose actual or potential conflicts of interest to their manager and stand down in any decision making process where they may be compromised.
Failure of a staff member to disclose a potential or actual conflict of interest constitutes a breach of RMIT University policy and may result in disciplinary actions. Depending on the nature and impact of the conflict of interest situation, other action may be instigated, including legal action.
It is not appropriate for peers or subordinates of an employee who is compromised to be involved in the management of the conflict of interest. Such staff are not considered to be outside the sphere of influence of the staff member concerned.
Confidentiality is to be maintained at all times by all persons involved and the University will seek to ensure that confidential disclosures are protected from misuse. Nothing precludes either the staff member who has disclosed the conflict of interest or the manager to whom the disclosure was made from seeking advice from Human Resources and/or the University's legal office, on any matters relating to this policy.[Next: Supporting documents and information ]