The Johns Hopkins University: University Policies
The Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University
Statement of Ethical Standards

Letter from President Brody Concerning This Policy

December 9, 2008

Dear Johns Hopkins Colleague:

One of the hallmarks of a great university is the integrity with which its faculty and staff conduct their research, teaching, service, clinical care and other activities. In pursuing knowledge for the world and serving our communities, we set high ethical standards in order to earn and retain the trust of our constituents and the public we serve. I ask that you become familiar with several important policies, listed below, that guide our conduct and promote integrity and ethical standards in all that we do.

* Ethical standards:
The university's Statement of Ethical Standards, as revised and reissued annually, guides the professional conduct of all administrators, faculty and staff. The most recent version of that statement is online here:

The statement requires compliance with all applicable federal, state and local laws as well as university policies. Please carefully review the statement; you are expected to observe diligently the standards it outlines.

* Disclosure of potentially conflicting interests:
All employees must disclose and obtain approval from a supervisor whenever an employee's relationship to an outside party might appear to influence the conduct of university business including, but not limited to, research. The relevant policy is available here:

* Acceptance of gifts:
Employees may not accept gifts and entertainment that might influence a decision or compromise judgment, or any benefits whose value exceeds $100 from an existing or potential vendor where the employee has authority or influence over university business decisions affecting the vendor. The relevant policy is available here:

* Institutional conflicts of interest:
The financial interests of the university and of its institutional officials must not compromise the integrity of research or unduly influence decisions at Johns Hopkins. A university committee of faculty and administrators has drafted a policy on institutional conflicts of interest. Initially, we intend to apply the policy to human subjects research and certain other contracts that pose unique potential for institutional conflicts. The draft policy is available here:

Details of final language, implementation, and timing will be forthcoming.

* Financial aid:
Officers, trustees, directors, employees and agents of Johns Hopkins are prohibited from receiving anything of more than nominal value from a lending institution in connection with university business. This and other prohibitions are part of the university's Financial Aid Code of Conduct. The code is available here:

* Related conflict of interest policies:
Several university divisions and units have additional conflict of interest policies that apply to their activities (e.g., purchasing policies, IRB policies and divisional policies for research). Please check with your supervisor or with the appropriate office in your division or unit for details.

* Laws and policies relating to detecting and preventing fraud, waste and abuse in federal health care programs:
The university's policy is set forth at: nd_Abuse_1.pdf.

Johns Hopkins was founded for the betterment of human life and is funded largely through philanthropy and public support. Everything we do rests on our reputation for integrity. We all, therefore, have a responsibility to conduct ourselves and the university's business in an ethical manner. In addition to complying with applicable laws and policies, it is important that you never hesitate to come forward if something does not seem right to you. If you have knowledge of, or suspect, unethical or illegal behavior, call the Johns Hopkins Compliance line at 1-877-932-6675 (1-877-WE-COMPLY).

I am confident that you will take your responsibilities in this area to heart and uphold the ethical principles long associated with Johns Hopkins.

William R. Brody
The Johns Hopkins University

Statement of Ethical Standards Policy


© 2008 The Johns Hopkins University. Baltimore, Maryland. All rights reserved.
Last updated 09Dec08 by