The Johns Hopkins University: University Policies
The Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University
Statement of Ethical Standards
Examples Related to Gifts

The following examples are used to clarify some of the issues that may arise in interpreting the statement "Faculty and staff should not accept gifts, entertainment or meals of more than nominal value from any organization with which the University has a current or potential business relationship."

Example 1: A personal friend with whom you have no past, present or expected future business dealings invites you and your spouse to go away with him for the weekend to the beach and stay at his condominium. Your friend sells computers, and some of his customers are departments and divisions within the University. You have nothing to do with either recommending or making any decision related to the purchase of those computers.

The Statement of Ethical Standards does not prohibit you from accepting the invitation.

Example 2: As a faculty member, you are meeting with colleagues from institutions in Boston to discuss your joint research collaboration and proposed publications. Your colleague from Harvard takes you out to dinner and pays for it and provides for hotel accommodations for you while you are there.

You may accept these "gifts" because they represent professional courtesies from your colleagues at other institutions with whom you engage in a variety of research, clinical or publication activities. Neither your colleague nor Harvard will derive any direct financial gain from your working together. This policy is not intended to prohibit such courtesies.

Example 3: Your department uses expert consultants to make recommendations on the purchase of new laboratory equipment and supplies. You are a faculty member in the department, and you have a role in recommending which consultants get hired. A consultant offers to take you to a Baltimore Orioles baseball game during the time period of the consultancy.

If the value of the ticket and other benefits associated with the event exceeds $100, such a gift would not be acceptable under the University policies.

Example 4: A representative from a company with whom your department does business offers to pay for the office Christmas party, an event to be held at a local restaurant, and involve several faculty and staff within the department. The representative of the company does not plan to attend the event. The cost of the event is significantly in excess of $100.

The gift is not acceptable.

If you have any questions that arise from these examples or from your own situation, please feel free to contact the General Counsel of the University.

September 7, 2005

Statement of Ethical Standards Policy


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Last updated 12Sep05 by