Undue Foreign Influence and Foreign Government Talent Recruitment Programs

NC State values and encourages international collaborations and educational opportunities, which promote openness in research and scholarship, serve our research and teaching missions, and advance academic freedom. Affiliations with foreign institutions, collaborative research, and scholarly exchanges are an essential part of the academic community. At the same time, the university must be careful to comply with U.S. laws and regulations that govern how international engagements are managed and reported.

Over the past 3 years, members of Congress and NC State’s federal research funding sponsors have raised serious concerns that some foreign government entities – primarily based in China and Russia – are attempting to exploit the open nature of the research-and-development environment at U.S. universities.  Specifically, Talent Recruitment Programs refer to initiatives undertaken by foreign-state entities to engage and attract scientists, engineers, academics, researchers, and entrepreneurs of all nationalities working or educated in the United States to join the foreign sponsored program and transfer their knowledge and expertise to the foreign state.

To increase the transparency of research faculty and staff relationships with foreign entities the NC State Conflicts of Interest (COI) and Notices of Intent (NOI) to Engage in External Professional Activities for Pay reporting systems were modified by adding new questions regarding faculty and staff relationships and activities with foreign entities.   

A website has been created to provide the most current information on this topic, as well as guidance for ensuring continued compliance. NC State staff in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation (ORI), the Office of Sponsored Programs and Regulatory Compliance (SPARCS), and the Office of General Counsel (OGC), who are familiar with the evolving regulations and policies governing research oversight, are available to help you understand and comply with the obligations that govern research conduct.