By providing a guide to high quality reporting on measures and conditions that promote fair research partnerships, the RFI encourages all stakeholders in research and innovation for health to describe what is done within their organisation to promote fair partnerships.
Through our extensive global consultative process, we have identified 17 key areas of relevance to effective and lasting partnerships. The RFI acknowledges that successful partnerships often start at personal level but are then continued at institutional or national levels. While mutual admiration, respect and friendship are essential to create the foundation of effective partnerships – it is the institutional and national dimensions of research collaboration that define how, ultimately, benefits are shared.
For example, although two highly successful collaborating researchers may wish to equally share Intellectual Property Rights or Overhead Costs or even the position of Project Director – it is their home institutions, their funders or shareholders that create the conditions for collaboration. These may help or hinder collaboration. But it is here where the RFI aims to create transparency, learning and benchmarking.
We further detail the 17 areas for reporting in our documents available here. These areas are grouped in three categories: measures and conditions that promote fairness:
- BEFORE Research happens – ‘Fairness of Opportunity’
- DURING Research – ‘Fair Process’
- AFTER Research – ‘Fair Benefit Sharing’
Annual RFI Reporting – parallel to annual financial and performance reporting – is our goal. If reports are written according to the guidelines, the RFI certification will be awarded.
The RFI Manuals provide information on exactly what needs to be reported on and how best to do this. We encourage uploading existing policies, reports, statements by CEOs, even videos – through which national or institutional positions can be stated with as little effort as possible.