Friday, October 15, 2010

Big Oil Goes to College - An Analysis of 10 Research Collaboration Contracts between Leading Energy Companies and Major U.S. Universities

This report from the Center for American Progress, dated October 2010, finds that the 10 contracts examined in this report indicate that the balance between Big Oil’s commercial interests and the university’s commitment to independent academic research, high-quality science, and academic freedom seems to have tilted in favor of Big Oil. As the author argues, this balance can be righted through:

• More careful oversight of industry-sponsored research contracts signed by U.S. universities to protect their core academic functions, including the production of reliable, high-quality, public knowledge.

• Adoption of stronger contract language designed to safeguard university independence, impartial peer review, and the production of high-quality public knowledge.

The federal government, too, can include these important contract provisions and safeguards in its Requests for Proposals, or RFPs, when it issues grant guidelines for new clean-energy R&D funds.

No comments: