Conflict of Interest

Potential Conflicts of Interest (COI) and Conflicts of Commitment (COC) are inevitable where faculty are engaged, as they ought to be, with collaborators, sponsors, publishers, and other institutions outside the University.

These potential conflicts are not necessarily problematic and faculty members are encouraged to engage in outside activities and relationships that enhance the University’s mission. To maintain our credibility in the eyes of the public, it is important that faculty disclose any potential conflicts of interest or commitment as soon as they arise so that they can be evaluated objectively and, if necessary, managed or eliminated. 

UM-Dearborn Policies

Disclosure of outside financial interests, conflict of interest (COI) and conflict of commitment (COC) for Dearborn employees are covered in the following documents:

Disclosures and Updates

Faculty Annual Disclosures:  All Dearborn faculty (tenured, tenure-track, and research faculty) have an obligation according to Dearborn policy to annually disclose in M-Inform outside financial interests related to their University job.  Annual disclosures must be submitted by September 15th of each year. 

Faculty Updates:  changes to the annual disclosure must be made promptly by completing an Update in M-Inform.  Updates must be made within 30 days of the change.

Staff Conflict of Interest:  Dearborn staff members do not complete annual disclosures but if a potential, apparent, or perceived conflict arises they should enter a disclosure in M-Inform which will be reviewed by their unit manager.

How do I access M-Inform?

From Wolverine Access (, click the Faculty & Staff tab, and then select M-Inform (Disclosure System) from the University Business menu. Log in using your uniqname and UMICH password. (An M-Token is not required).

What if I have nothing to disclose?

If you have no outside financial interest related to your University responsibilities, follow the easy step-by-step instructions:

 M-Inform Nothing to Disclose Instructions


For help with M-Inform, decision tree, and step-by-step instructions on how to submit a disclosure, see  

For U-M conflict of interest policy, email 

For help with problems using M-Inform, contact the ITS Service Center:

For More Information

GENERAL:  For general information about conflict of interest and conflict of commitment, see the UM-Ann Arbor Provost website.  University policies on Conflict of Interest and Commitment can be found in the Standard Practice Guide (SPG 201.65-1).  

Example scenarios and discussion questions may be helpful in understanding when these policies apply and when an employee might be in a conflict situation

PROCUREMENT: Guidance for COI in UM purchasing decisions, contact Dearborn Financial Services.

SPONSORED PROGRAMS: Guidance for COI in Sponsored Programs can be found on the Vice President for Research website.

FACULTY CONSULTING: additional information on faculty working outside the University can be found in the UM Faculty Handbook (Section 7.C.3) and the Standard Practice Guide (SPG 201.65-0).


Policy owned by: Human Resources and Office of the Provost

Last reviewed: 10/2019

Next review: 4/2021