Proposals to the Tobacco Industry

Although Regents Policy does not prohibit the solicitation or acceptance of funds for tobacco-related research, it does require that such projects be reviewed carefully. 

Regent Policy 2309: Policy Requiring Special Review/Approval Procedures Prior to University Submission of Research Proposals to Tobacco Industry Funders, requires that each UC campus establish a process for ensuring that any proposal submitted to a company whose primary business is the manufacture and sale of tobacco products, or any agency that is substantially controlled or acting on behalf of a tobacco company, must first undergo scientific peer review.

Since the adoption of this policy in September 2007, the tobacco industry has evolved significantly. Campuses should carefully vet funding sources, keeping in mind that tobacco industry funds may be awarded by subsidiaries that are not obviously identifiable as being connected to the tobacco industry. RPAC maintains a list of entities identified as being a part of the Tobacco Industry.

Since the adoption of Regent Policy 2309 in September 2007, the Tobacco Industry has evolved significantly. Some entities are readily identifiable as belonging to the tobacco industry, others are not. RPAC and the Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (TRDRP) have compiled a list of entities that are identified with the tobacco industry to assist in vetting sponsors that may fall under the policy.

Adopted in September 2007 (and initially referred to as RE-89), Regent Policy 2309 includes the following elements:

No proposal for extramural funding may be submitted to a company whose primary business is the manufacture and sale of tobacco products, or any agency that is substantially controlled or acting on behalf of a tobacco company without a campus prior review and approval under the provisions set forth in the policy.

It creates guidelines for the creation of scientific review committee, describes the way in which the review is to be conducted, and requires that the committee outline its recommendations in a written report to the Chancellor.  

It requires that a Chancellor provide the researcher, the President, and The Regents with a written determination approving or disapproving the request to submit the proposal.  

Under the policy, the Office of the President must post the written determinations under this Regent Policy on the UCOP website. These determinations are published specifically on the right-hand column of this page.

Campuses should forward written determinations to Michael Kusiak at Michael.Kusiak@ucop.edu for publication.