Assessing the Attitudes and Practices of Public Health Professionals Regarding Funding from For-Profit Corporations
Over the past two decades, many corporations have begun philanthropic contributions to universities under the rubric of corporate social responsibility (CSR). In an era of dwindling support from governments and foundations, many universities have, in turn, begun to solicit funds from businesses. In the case of schools of public health, some potential corporate funders make products that may be considered harmful to health or a threat to the environment, creating a potential conflict of interest. The overall aim of this project is to inform a policy debate about possible guidelines for making decisions about accepting funds from for-profit corporations. At present, there are no generalized guidelines to govern the receipt of research and sponsorship funds from for-profit corporations - practices differ by schools and programs of public health. This project, managed by the American University of Beirut, will survey public health academics and practitioners around the world about their attitudes and practices around funding from for-profit corporations, particularly those whose products are associated with non-communicable diseases. The project will also review existing policies that govern schools of public health around the globe with respect to taking funds from for-profit corporations. The project will focus on schools and programs of public health in the Eastern Mediterranean region, North America, Africa, and Southeast Asia.