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American Public Health Association
133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Philadelphia, PA
APHA 2005
3074.0: Monday, December 12, 2005 - 11:42 AM

Abstract #120999

Corporate funding of scientific societies

Brion J. Fox, JD, Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention, University of Wisconsin Medical School, 7278 Medical Sciences Center, 1300 University Avenue, Madison, WI 53706, (608) 262-3894, bjf@ctri.medicine.wisc.edu

Private scientific societies are placed under intense scrutiny regarding their use of external funds to support operations. This scrutiny arises from the concern that the donations could lead to a bias within the society or among the society's members favoring certain types of research or to favor policy statements that are in line with the funding organization's goals. The scrutiny also results because of a perception that corporations may profit through the association with the societies in ways that are not consistent with the goals of the society. The outright refusal of such funds does not present a plausible alternative, however. Not only are the funds needed to offset expenses, but scientific societies can be more effective if they work together with like-minded organizations rather than in isolation. In recognition of the need to balance the risks and benefits of corporate sponsorship, the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco has adopted a set of conflict of interest guidelines to govern decisions about whether to accept corporate funding and to regulate the use of funds that are accepted. In this talk, I will describe the key principles underlying the guidelines and the guidelines themselves. Specifically, I will emphasize how SRNT used principles of autonomy and corporate responsibility to make class-based distinctions, such as the exclusion of tobacco company funds, and to establish a protocol for handling other funds.

Learning Objectives:

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.

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The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA