OEN UK seeks to have mutually beneficial partnerships with industry, where there are the common goals of furthering the understanding of obesity and positively impacting public health. We are committed to following ethical principles in accepting support from industry, ensuring that we operate in a transparent manner and without influence from whomever should provide financial assistance. More details of this can be found below:
This policy stipulates the conditions for accepting financial support from all entities external to OEN UK and includes but is not limited to corporate, philanthropic or individual (henceforth referred to as “donor”), financial and/or non-financial (i.e. product or services) contributions.
This policy expressly eliminates all forms of evaluation or judgment of the funding source (other than the stipulation that funding is reasonably assumed not to be derived from activities deemed ‘illegal’). OEN UK chooses instead to focus its ethical mission on transparency in disclosing the sources of funding, clear stipulations outlining our commitment to the ethical use of funds, and a commitment to non-influence of the funding sources over the scientific aspects of funded projects and OEN UK as a whole.
OEN UK, by adopting an open and transparent approach to all potential funding sources hopes to create an atmosphere of acceptance and appreciation of all donors’ potential to contribute, through OEN UK, to being part of the solution. To this end we have adopted the following 5-point criteria for accepting external funding:
Funds will only be accepted to do those activities for which OEN UK is constituted (see mission statement). Funds will not be accepted if they:
i. Set condition(s) above the inferences to be drawn from research or other activities by members of OEN UK.
ii. Set any conditions about the views to be presented in any OEN UK forum (including the views of non OEN UK members).
iii. Restrict the dissemination of any information about or from any OEN UK activity.
iv. Restrict acceptance of funding from other sources.
v. Entail any obligation to support in any way the goals of the donor, except for those goals that are mutual with OEN UK for the specific activity funded.
vi. Could, through other kinds of coercion, result in conditions i - v above.
i) OEN UK should seek funding from as wide a variety of donors as possible.
ii) OEN UK will make these policies (outlined herein) clear to donors before accepting funding.
iii) OEN UK will disclose all sources of past funding (minimum last 5 years) and current funding in a clearly identified ‘disclosures’ section of the OEN UK public website. These disclosures will be made by OEN UK representatives (leadership) when speaking on behalf of OEN UK (either directly or through identification of the website URL for OEN UK disclosures).
iv) A link to the disclosures webpage (URL) will be part of all official OEN UK communications (i.e. press releases and policy statements).
v) Disclosure will also be made at all OEN UK functions for which specific funding is provided for the event and or its participants and provide a statement that follows a format similar to this in printed materials:
“We gratefully acknowledges the unrestricted underwriting of OEN UK’s activities provided by the following donors:
Novo Nordisk UK
Acceptance of these funds does not imply endorsement of the donor or its products, services or mission.”
With this simple approach to funding, our ethical responsibility is to approve donor funds for unbiased usage and scientifically valuable ends. Donors know that if they provide financial support to OEN UK they will receive recognition for funding efforts to combat obesity and for the specific programs or grants they funded. Also, OEN UK commits to use the funds in ways that are appropriate and free from bias and that no OEN UK policy or action will in any way be influenced by our financial relationships at any time. The leadership board are entrusted with the responsibility of ensuring that these principles are upheld in all we do.