Non-Financial Agreements

For more information about any of these agreement types, contact the OSP Senior Research Administrator assigned to your college or department.

Material Transfer Agreement (MTA):

Scientific materials being transferred between Colorado State University (CSU) and another organization must be contractually covered with a Material Transfer Agreement (MTA). The purpose of the MTA is to protect the intellectual and other property rights of the provider while permitting research with the material to proceed. These agreements describe the terms and purpose of the exchange, including the period of performance, intellectual property rights, liability issues, publication, confidentiality or financial terms, and the specifics of the materials and their transfer.

An MTA Information Sheet is required to begin the process of providing or receiving material.

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Confidentiality/Non-Disclosure Agreement (C/NDA):

Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA), also known as Confidentiality Agreements or Proprietary Information Agreements, are commonly requested when two or more parties wish to enter into initial discussions about specific processes, methods, or technology for the purpose of determining the potential for a future relationship.  An NDA is a legal agreement which defines information that the parties wish to protect from dissemination and outlines restrictions on use. 

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Data Sharing and Data Use Agreements (DUAs):

Data sharing allows other researchers to verify data analyses and to use it in pursuit of novel discoveries. Federal awarding agencies, foundations, or private industry may require investigators to address how data generated from research will be managed and publically shared. However, some data requires protection and can only be shared after a Data Use Agreement (DUA) has been put into place.

A Data Use Agreement (DUA) is a contractual mechanism that documents what data are being shared and how data can be used. Data use agreements typically address the period of the agreement, intended use of the data, constraints on data use, confidentiality, security, and methods and costs of data sharing. DUA’s should create a balance between protecting confidentiality when necessary while permitting appropriate publication and sharing of research results based on University policies, applicable laws and regulations, and federal requirements.

A DUA might also govern the sharing of data between research collaborators who are covered entities under the HIPAA Privacy Rule. A DUA can be used to establish who is permitted to receive and use a limited data set (LDS)* and how the information is protected.

*A limited data set is one in which certain direct identifiers specified in the Privacy Rule have been removed. A limited data set may only be disclosed to an outside party without a patient’s authorization after a DUA has been signed and only if the purpose of the disclosure is for research, public health, or health care operations.

For more information on DUAs that involve a limited data set, contact RICRO. For general questions about data sharing and if a Data Use Agreement needs to be in place prior, contact the appropriate OSP Senior Research Administrator.

Memorandum of Understanding (MOU):

An MOU can be used in the early stages of a collaboration to help define each party’s role and contribution to a proposed project. It is not usually considered a legally binding contract, but can help provide project activity and deliverables clarity in a multi-partner proposal to a sponsor.

If a Request for Proposal document includes reference to ‘teaming agreement’ or ‘MOU’, contact the OSP Senior Research Administrator for your college or department. You should also include your department research administrator and OSP pre-award Research Administrator, to keep everyone on the same page.

License, Bailment, Site Access Agreement, etc.:

CSU’s Office of Sponsored Programs is authorized to act on behalf of the University with regard to other types of non-financial agreements as they might be related to sponsored activity. CSU’s Office of General Counsel, Procurement Office, and Contracting Office all also handle non-financial agreements, so if you contact your OSP Senior Research Administrator or Contracting Officer Diana Ehrlich, and the agreement would not be handled by OSP, we can refer you to the appropriate CSU office for assistance.