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Emory's commitment to international collaboration, federal compliance

Emory University reaffirmed its absolute commitment to international research collaborations and serving as a responsible steward of taxpayer dollars in a note sent to faculty, researchers and graduate students. 

The June 24 memo continues an ongoing dialogue as Emory engages in public policy discussions in Washington and on campus about the need to balance security controls with the vital role research universities play in promoting the free exchange of ideas around the world.

Below is the email:


Dear Colleagues,

We recognize that recent tensions between the United States and China regarding trade relations, intellectual property, and academic relationships have placed considerable pressure on faculty, students and staff at Emory and universities across the country. In light of pending legislation and recent Senate hearings, we want to take this opportunity to update you on our efforts to stand with and for the Emory academic and research community in public policy discussions and government interactions.

Both through our own government relations department and through professional guilds and organizations,  Emory has been actively engaged in Washington to support the vital role of research universities, the need for continued international collaboration, and to underscore its commitment to the rules and regulations that come with its responsibility as a steward of taxpayer dollars.

As Congress and federal agencies raise concerns about foreign influence on research activities in America’s universities, we will remain steadfast in our longstanding support for academic freedom and the proven value over decades of our collaboration with researchers from other countries.

Emory is in active dialogue with members of Congress and the administration to support its research community and help ensure its continued vitality.  A few weeks ago, we joined with other universities and organizations to encourage passage of the Securing American Science and Technology Act of 2019. A letter signed by Emory and other institutions notes that the bill would safeguard “federally funded research and development from growing threats of foreign interference, cyberattacks, theft, and espionage.”

For years, our excellent research, scholarship and patient care have been achieved by talented individuals from diverse backgrounds who share a common goal of improving the human condition.

Emory’s reputation is not only reflected by the groundbreaking work we do together, but in the ethics, integrity, and uncompromising standards for professional conduct we deliver each day in the pursuit of excellence. As you know, Emory takes very seriously its obligation to be a good steward of federal research dollars and to ensure compliance with all funding disclosure requirements. In that regard, Emory has a robust set of policies to assist in applying appropriate protocols. We encourage you to familiarize yourselves and staff with this information and to reach out with any questions.

We will continue to update you on our efforts in Washington and in support of our shared mission. In a few months, our decades-long tradition of welcoming international scholars to campus will continue.  More than 3,100 international students from nearly 100 countries study at Emory, and we employ more than 1,000 international scholars from around the world. We are a stronger, more vibrant academic community thanks to our international members, and we want to say unequivocally, “You are welcome here. You are respected here, and we greatly value your contributions.”



Dwight A. McBride, PhD
Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

Jonathan S. Lewin, MD, FACR
Emory Executive Vice President for Health Affairs
Executive Director, Woodruff Health Sciences Center
President, CEO and Chairman of the Board, Emory Healthcare

Deborah Watkins Bruner, RN, PhD, FAAN
Senior Vice President for Research, Emory University
Robert W. Woodruff Professor of Nursing
Professor of Radiation Oncology

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