CNS Commitment to working with industry partners and sponsors
CNS is committed to maintaining responsible and transparent processes in all of its activities. All CNS conference programming, educational initiatives and award recipients are reviewed and approved by respective CNS committees. As with all of our sector stakeholders, CNS considers and values industry partner and sponsor input, but retains all programmatic and editorial control. The CNS endorses the following principles and uses them as a guide in managing our collaboration with all relevant stakeholders.
- Have a clearly defined and achievable goal to improve the health of the public
- Both partners need to be continually mindful of the public benefit goal of the partnership and communicate that fact to the public.
- Certification that a project is in the best interest of the Society, with no financial or real conflict of interest for scientists involved.
- Articulate a clear statement of work, rules and partner roles, responsibilities, and accountability, to build trust, transparency, and mutual respect as core operating principles.
- Acknowledge that there may be 'deal breakers'
- Ensure that objectives will meet stakeholder partners' needs, with a clearly defined baseline to monitor progress and measure success.
- Transparency and open communication is crucial to building the mutual trust - external and internal.
- An exit strategy should be included in the partnership governance documents in the event that one partner opts to leave.
- Considering the importance of balance, ensure that all members possess appropriate levels of bargaining power.
- Minimize conflict of interest by recruiting a sufficient number of partners to mitigate influence by any single member and to broaden private-sector perspectives and expertise.
- Ensure the many forms of potential bias of interest are included in the COI (real or perceived). Full disclosure and transparency and potential recusal are recommended
- Engage partners who agree upon specific and fundable research question(s) to be addressed by the partnership.
- secondary goals may benefit one partner or another (need not be the same).
- Enlist partners who are committed to the long-term goals as well as to the sharing of funding and research data.
- A PPP may be strategic, as well as tactical (implying a shorter term).
- Funding should refer to in-kind as well as financial resources.
- Along with government and the private sector, include academics and other members of civil society (i.e. NGOs, foundations) as partners.
- Distinguish partners from stakeholders – those who should not have the ability to modify the PPP but who should be included in the communications for the sake of transparency and to make the PPP as inclusive as possible.
- Select objective scientific measurements capable of providing common ground for both public and private sector research goals.
- There should be some goals capable of being measured objectively so that the PPP would have a way of gauging success or failure in a manner that would be transparent.
- Additional measures, including subjective measures, could be added to the PPP's secondary goals.
- Adopt research questions and methodologies established by partners with no vested financial interest in them, ideally in the precompetitive space.
- Be flexible and ensure ongoing transparent communications.
- Consider a third-party convener to ensure equality at the table, clarify rules, establish operational guidelines, and specify funding arrangements.
- A neutral third-party might facilitate the PPP-formation process, to aid in the event of a problem with the operational guidelines, and to ensure greater awareness of the guiding principles among the partners.
Alexander N., Rowe, S., Brackett R.E., Burton-Freeman B., Hentges E., Kretser A., Klurfield D., Meyers L., Mukherjea R., Ohlhorst S. Achieving a transparent, actionable framework for public-private-partnerships for food and nutrition research. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2015;101:1359-63.