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Openness in Research

What is Openness in Research?

As a public institution, the University of Michigan's mission is to generate and disseminate knowledge in the public interest for open scholarly exchange and academic freedom.This policy is often described as "Openness in Research."  (See Standard Practice Guide 303.01). 

What are Publication Restrictions or a PAF-R?

Sometimes a sponsor requires a delay in publication or an approval of a research publication. When this happens, the request (called a PAF-R or Proposal Approval Form-Restricted) must be approved by the Vice President for Research and added to the PAF.  

How are these currently handled?

The process is system-managed and will be in eRPM work queues so you don't have to use the Posted Comment option. Our website and standard operating procedures will be updated to reflect this modification.

ORSP project representatives initiate requests, provide input and advice in the preparation of requests and also provide a written description of the publication restriction and the negotiation efforts to remove it.

A Department Chair and Dean must approve the PAF-R and include a letter of justification in support of the PAF-R when routing to ORSP.

What is the Regents' Policy on Research Grants, Contracts, and Agreements?

Icon of information sources

The Regents of the University of Michigan established policies governing research agreements on April 17, 1987 to ensure that:

  • The University of Michigan reserves the right to publish and disseminate information resulting from sponsored research;
  • The University of Michigan can maintain the confidentiality of the sponsor’s confidential information, when necessary;
  • The University of Michigan does not conduct research that restricts the freedom to disclose the existence of the agreement; and  
  • The University of Michigan can conduct classified research in limited circumstances

This policy is often described as "Openness in Research." The full text can be seen at Standard Practice Guide 303.01. 

Exceptions are granted on a case-by-case basis through the PAF-R process. Note that the Regents’ policy does not apply to "Other Sponsored Activity."

PAF-R

screenshot of University of Michigan Proposal Approval Form-Restricted

A PAF-R (Proposal Approval Form-Restricted) is a supplementary Proposal Approval form for review of restrictions on publication or dissemination of research results.  The most common reasons to process a PAF-R is when the sponsor requires prior approval before publication or a delay in publication in excess of 180 days.

PAF-Rs are prepared by the PI and processed in eRPM to ORSP. A Department Chair and Dean must approve the PAF-R and include a letter of justification in support of the PAF-R when routing to ORSP.

ORSP project representatives will provide input and advice in the preparation of a PAF-R and will also provide a written description of the publication restriction and the negotiation efforts to remove it. Final approval of a PAF-R rests with the Vice President for Research.

 

References and Resources