The CDA is the tool to assist NIH researchers to
gain access to proprietary information from industry researchers
while at the same time protect the Government researcher’s
right to publish and continue research. As a Government researcher,
you are located on a balance scale between the parties holding the
view that the government suppresses too much information and the
view that the government is incapable of keeping a secret. Whereas
academia in the past published everything, under present law and
market place conditions, academia is also trying to find a balance
between open research and market demands. CDAs are established for
a specific purpose, regarding a specific topic and for a specific
time period, as negotiated by the parties involved.
Processing a CDA:
NINDS Investigators are responsible for making the determination
as to whether the activity is official duty or should be conducted
as outside work.
When the activity is determined to be an inside activity (Official
Duty), the CDA is between the Institute and the outside party, with
the Investigator acting as an agent of the Institute. Once a CDA
for an inside activity is in effect, requests to terminate the CDA
must got through the NINDS TTO and Ethics Offices. The investigator
involved with the CDA will be subject to a 12-month “cooling
off” period before initiating any outside work with that particular
When an investigator determines an activity to be classified as
an "outside" activity, a CDA is between the investigator
and the outside party. The NINDS TTO cannot review or provide advice
since the CDA is done in a personal capacity. For any questions
regarding an outside activity CDA, you should contact the NINDS
Ethics Officer. Once approved, outside activity requests remain
in effect until the ending date provided on the HHS-520 form. If
terminated earlier, the investigator should notify the NINDS Ethics
office for cancellation of that particular request.
Please note that there is a 12-month “cooling off”
period that goes into effect when the outside activity is cancelled
meaning that the investigator is disqualified for one year from
conclusion of outside activity from all Official Duty activities
relating to the organization.
To process a CDA for work being done in an official capacity, the
CDA must be reviewed by NINDS Technology Transfer Office (TTO) to
assure compliance with statutory, regulatory and policy guidelines.
The NINDS TTO will review and negotiate any required changes to
terms of the agreement, attain the authorized Company and IC signature,
have the Investigator sign, and handle all mailing. Generally, one
should allow three to four weeks prior to meeting with the company
to assure clearance.