012.025 - Conflict of Commitment and Outside Activities of Faculty Members

UCSC:APO:CAPM 9/16

A. Policy Overview of APM 025

The University's policy on Conflict of Commitment and Outside Activities of Faculty Members (APM 025) manages conflict of commitment, defines which outside professional activities must be disclosed to the University and approved prior to engagement, and/or reported annually. This policy limits the amount of time a faculty member may devote to outside professional activities and describes the requirements when involving a student in outside professional activities. Outside professional activities that interfere with a faculty member’s professional obligations to the University represent a conflict of commitment.

Faculty members who are employed by the University of California owe their primary professional allegiance to the University and accept as their own the University’s responsibilities to advance and communicate knowledge. Teaching, research or other creative activities, and the cultivation of scholarly or creative competence, are their primary activities and should receive the largest commitment of time and energy; the same expectation exists for part-time faculty to the extent of their faculty appointment.

Outside professional activities must be undertaken in a manner consistent with the faculty member’s professional obligations to the University. Outside activities must not conflict with the faculty member’s obligations to students, colleagues, or to the University as a whole. In order to fulfill those obligations, faculty members must maintain a significant presence on campus, meet classes, keep office hours, hold examinations as scheduled, be accessible to students and staff, be available to interact with University colleagues, and share service responsibilities throughout every quarter of active service.

APM 025 acknowledges the value of outside professional activities while recognizing the likelihood that some outside activities may cause real or apparent conflicts of commitment. Outside professional activities must not interfere with a faculty member’s obligations to the University.

In addition to the policy on conflict of commitment and outside activities, faculty must comply with all University policies involving University intellectual property, use of University resources, conflict of interest, and restrictions on compensation (see section I below for a list of related University policies).

The full text of this systemwide policy is available online at: http:www.ucop.edu/academic-personnel-programs/_files/apm/apm-025-07-01.pdf

B. Definitions

1. Conflict of Commitment

A conflict of commitment occurs when a faculty member’s outside activities interfere with the faculty member’s professional obligations to the University of California. [APM 025 does not cover conflict of interest, see section I below for relevant University policies concerning conflict of interest.]

2. Outside Professional Activities

Outside professional activities, compensated or uncompensated and regardless of financial interest, are defined as those activities that are within a faculty member’s area of professional, academic expertise and that advance or communicate that expertise through interaction with industry, the community, or the public.  Additional University-compensated teaching as described in APM 662 is also included in this definition.

One common type of outside professional activity is outside consulting, which is defined as professional advice or services related to the faculty member’s field or discipline, whether compensated or uncompensated, that furthers the interests of an entity outside of the University of California.

Outside professional activities are distinct from non-professional activities, i.e., activities that are part of the faculty member’s private life and are not expressly governed by University regulations or by the guidelines on outside professional activities.

3.  A Day

For purposes of APM 025, a day is defined using common sense and customary practice.  For additional teaching activities, the general rule is that every six contact of “podium” hours spent with students equals one day.

C. Categories of Outside Professional Activities

Outside professional activities are separated into three categories, which are based on the extent to which they are likely to constitute a conflict of commitment in the management of APM 025. Category I and II include activities that must be reported annually and counted against a faculty member’s 39/48-day maximum time limits.  In addition, before engaging in any Category I activities, faculty must receive prior approval in writing from their Dean or the Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor. Category III activities are those that are within the course and scope of a faculty member’s employment at the University and are not reported annually and do not require prior approval. When an activity falls into more than one category, it should be assigned to the category which requires more stringent reporting and prior approval, as applicable.

For a description of Category I, Category II, and Category III activities and common examples of them, see APM 025-10, Guidelines.

D. Involving a Student in Outside Professional Activity

If the faculty member has, or expects to have, academic responsibility (instructional, evaluative, or supervisory) for the student, the faculty member must obtain prior written approval from their divisional dean before involving a student in an outside professional activity regardless of whether the faculty member is compensated for or has a financial interest in the activity. Involvement of students means any substantive activity in which the student participates, whether the student is compensated or uncompensated. A faculty member involving a student in outside activities has the responsibility to ensure that the student’s participation does not interfere with the student’s academic obligations. The involvement of a student in the outside professional activity of a faculty member must not affect, positively or negatively, the faculty member’s evaluation of the student’s performance in any other context.

E. Eligibility and Time Limits

1. Faculty Subject to APM 025

All faculty holding appointments in the Professor series, Adjunct Professor series, and Lecturer with Security of Employment series, including recall appointments, are subject to APM 025. This includes the requirement to obtain prior written approval from their dean before involving a student in any outside professional activity (see section D above, Involving a Student in Outside Professional Activities).

However, faculty holding appointments of less than 50 percent time are not subject to the disclosure and prior approval requirements for Category I activities or the annual reporting requirements.

2. Time Limits

Faculty may engage in Category I and II outside professional activities for up to 39 days per year for academic-year faculty and 48 days per year for fiscal-year faculty. It is expected that the use of days will be allocated evenly across service periods. Days not used in one year may not be carried forward to the next year.

There are no restrictions on the number of days of Category I and II activities for academic-year faculty during the summer months unless such faculty are receiving additional compensation from the University (typically referred to as “summer salary”). During the time that an academic-year faculty member receives additional summer compensation, the limit on Category I and II activities is the equivalent of one day per week during the period in which such compensation is received; the 39-day maximum during the academic year is separate and distinct from this.

For faculty with part-time appointments at 50 percent time or more, the 39/48-day maximum shall be prorated based on the percentage and duration of appointment, provided that the faculty member had otherwise fulfilled his or her obligations to the University. In addition, the faculty member could engage in additional outside professional activities during the time not committed to University service.

Faculty on leave:

(1)   Faculty on approved leave without pay are subject to disclosure and prior approval, and annual reporting requirements but are not subject to the 39/48-day maximum time limits.

(2)   Faculty on approved sabbatical or other leaves with pay are subject to the disclosure and prior approval, annual reporting requirements and 39/48-day maximum time limits.

(3)   Faculty on approved vacation are not subject to the disclosure and prior approval, annual reporting requirements, or 48-day maximum time limits for outside professional activity performed during the vacation period.

F. Annual Reporting Requirements and Reporting Period

Eligible faculty (see section E.1 above) must report annually all Category I and II activities engaged in during the previous 12 months; the reporting period is July 1 through June 30. These reports are due to Department Chairs by September 30 of each year and must be completed even if no Category I or II activities were undertaken. These annual reports are considered to be non-confidential and non-personal. They are subject to public inspection.

The campus version of the APM 025 Annual Report form and instructions for completing it are available online at: http://apo.ucsc.edu/policy/capm/docs/APM_025-Annual-Report.pdf.

G. Requests for Prior Approval to Engage in Category I Activities or for Involving Students in Outside Professional Activities

Faculty must receive prior approval before engaging in any Category I activities.  Requests should be submitted to the Department Chair at least 45 days in advance of the activity. Deans have authority for approving requests to involve students in a faculty member’s outside professional activities and all Category I activities with the exception of teaching, research, or administration of a grant at an entity outside of the University of California, which fall under the authority of the Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor. Approvals are generally for one fiscal year but may be granted for a longer term, not to exceed five years.

The campus version of the Prior Approval Form is available online at: http://apo.ucsc.edu/policy/capm/docs/012.025_Prior-Approval-Form.pdf.

H. Summary of Reporting and Prior Approval Responsibilities for Faculty, Department Chairs, Deans, and Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor

Eligible Faculty:

  • Complete and submit the campus version of the APM 025 Annual Report to their Department Chair by September 30 each year certifying that their outside professional activities fall within established limits. These reports must include all Category I and II activities engaged in during the reporting period, including the summer months if receiving additional University compensation (typically referred to as “summer salary”).
  • Request and receive prior approval before involving a student in an outside professional activity or engaging in any Category I activities. Requests should be submitted to the Department Chair at least 45 days in advance of the activity.

Department Chair:

  • Establish a procedure to request, receive, and review an Annual Report of all Category I and Category II outside professional activities from each eligible faculty member.
  • By October 31 of each year, submit a report to the Dean affirming whether or not an Annual Report has been received for each eligible faculty member.
  • Maintain the Annual Report forms in departmental files (departments are the office of record for these documents, which are considered public records subject to disclosure requests).
  • Review and forward all requests to involve students in outside professional activities or for Category I approval to the Dean 30 days in advance of the activity.
  • Discuss with faculty any concerns about whether the standards of APM 025 are being met. If a satisfactory resolution cannot be reached, advise the Dean.

Dean:

  • Request, receive, and review the Annual Reports of Department Chairs.
  • Approve or deny requests to involve students in outside professional activities and Category I requests; for requests involving teaching, research, or the administration of a grant outside of the University of California, review and forward to the Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor.
  • Overall responsibility for implementation and compliance with APM 025 in the division.

Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor:

  • Request, receive, and review the Annual Reports of Deans and full-time Vice Provosts.
  • Approve or deny Category I requests involving teaching, research, or the administration of a grant outside of the University of California.
  • Overall responsibility for implementation and compliance with APM 025 for the campus.

I. Related University Policies

Conflict of Interest Policy and Compendium of Specialized University Policies, Guidelines, and Regulations Related to Conflict of Interest (BFB-G-39)
Current Conflict of Interest Code
University of California Policy on Disclosure of Financial Interests and Management of Conflicts of Interest Related to Sponsored Projects
Disclosure of Financial Interest in Private Sponsors of Research (APM 028)
University of California Policy on the Requirement to Submit Proposals and to Receive Awards for Grants and Contracts through the University
Standing Order of The Regents 103.1(b) (Service Obligations)
University Regulation No. 3 (APM 005, Privileges and Duties of Members of the Faculty)
University Regulation No. 4 (APM 020, Special Services to Individuals and Organizations)
Faculty Code of Conduct (APM 015)
University Policy on The Faculty Code of Conduct and the Administration of Discipline (APM 016)
Deans (APM 240)
Faculty Administrators (Positions Less Than 100%) (APM 241)
Faculty Administrators (100% Time) (APM 246)
Senior Management Group Outside Professional Activities (Regents Policy 7707)


Prior Approval Form [PDF] | Annual Reporting Form [PDF] | FAQs