Research contracts are legally binding agreements that govern collaborative research between the University and external organisations. Such organisations may be funding the research in whole or in part, or may be participating in the conduct of the research itself. Research contracts contain the terms and conditions under which specific research project to which they relate is to be conducted.
The University sets up many different types of research contracts with a wide range of organisations:
- Other universities
- Industrial funders
- Government departments
The University has standard templates that we prefer to work to, where possible. Where this is not possible, we will be able to help with reviewing the terms of the agreement you have received, covering off each of the clauses and explaining, in practical terms, what they mean for you.
No specific outcome is guaranteed through a research contract. However, the contract will determine who owns the intellectual property (IP) arising from the research, and the results of the research should always be published. There may be stipulations as regards this publication, but the Contracts Team will be able to go through the specifics of this in each instance.
Costs associated with research are determined according to University guidelines. Business Engagement and the Research Support team within your school will be able to help in the preparation of these costs.
We will require a PanMan and approved budget, your Research Support Manager can help with these. Also, in order to move things forward as efficiently as possible, if you could make us aware of any issues from the outset, this would be very helpful. Such issues might include:
- Whether intellectual property is expected to be created and what form it will take
- Will any of the work be subcontracted to a third party?
- Will any other researchers or students be working on the project?
- Any specific timelines or deadlines
The amount of time to put in place a signed contract can vary considerably depending upon a number of factors such as the complexity of the project
- The number of parties involved.
- How quickly the other parties are to review the contract and respond.
- The starting point of the negotiation.
It can take anything from a couple of days to turn around an unaltered University template agreement, to several months to agree on a multi-party consortium agreement.
- Contract Negotiation Process - the full map of the contracts negotiation process.
Research agreements are handled by the Contract Manager for your particular school.