Industry Sponsors

Information for Prospective Research Sponsors

Vanderbilt University welcomes the opportunity to engage in research sponsored by the federal government, by private foundations, by private companies/corporations or other sponsors. The following summarizes the University's position on negotiation of certain important research contract terms:


The University reserves the right to publish or otherwise disclose research results at its discretion. Sponsors may not prohibit or limit publication. The University will agree to delay publication submission for up to 90 days to give a sponsor time to review publication content for sponsor proprietary information and potential patents. Delay can be extended for a reasonable period of time in cases in which the sponsor has the right to file a patent and elects to do so.


The University is willing to maintain the confidentiality of the sponsor's proprietary information. Limitations on the disposition of proprietary information must be described in writing and agreed to by the University prior to disclosure. Any requirements of confidentiality should be limited, especially as they apply to graduate and professional students, when those provisions inhibit in any material way the free flow and exchange of ideas important to University missions.


The University provides all research results on an as-is, reasonable-effort basis. The University provides no guarantees, warranties, or assurances as to the usefulness of the research results for any purpose.


The University is willing to join in a mutual indemnity with a sponsor covering claims and losses attributable to the negligent acts or omissions of personnel in the performance of contracted research. The University does not indemnify sponsors against claims or losses arising from intentional or willful acts or violations of law. The University does not indemnify sponsors against claims or losses resulting from intellectual property infringement that might occur in the course of conducting research.


The University retains ownership of patent rights and any software copyrights resulting from all University research. Sponsors have the right to negotiate an exclusive or a nonexclusive license with the University.


The University will not enter into research agreements in which the sponsor seeks ownership or exclusive control over the use of project generated data, samples, or related information("Data"). The University requires continued academic use of all such data, which can include appropriately defined confidentiality terms. The sponsor may own reports and other deliverables containing project generated data.