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E10: Classified Research Policy


Approved by the University Faculty on March 13, 1973

This document concerns the rights and obligations of faculty members and students insofar as they relate to research done on the The University of New Mexico (UNM) campus. Consideration of faculty members' and students' rights and obligations as consultants to off-campus agencies, individuals, or other parties is specifically excluded.

It is recognized that, in certain areas of research, the association of faculty members with off-campus facilities has provided access to expensive and sophisticated types of equipment not available at UNM and has consequently contributed toward the training and development of students. However, in order to preserve as open a university society as possible, faculty members should attempt to obtain support for unclassified research.

  1. In preservation of academic freedom, the right of every faculty member to solicit, conduct or participate in privately and governmentally sponsored research of their choice is recognized, whether such research is classified or not, so long as it is within the limits of existing UNM policies as detailed in the Faculty Handbook. Sponsored research at UNM is justified only when it contributes toward the professional development of the faculty and also provides opportunities for the development of students. Classified research is no exception to the validity of these two criteria. Consequently, when a research project is proposed, UNM, on behalf of the proponents and/or principal investigators-to-be, will inform the potential sponsor of UNM's policies relating to classified research. Simultaneously, UNM will request from the potential sponsor unrestricted dissemination of the procedures and the results of the research. In the event of denial of such request by the potential sponsor, the proponents will still be free to proceed with the implementation of the contract, so long as it is not in violation of the following guidelines.

  2. Students may participate in research projects of their interest, whether classified or not, within the limits of UNM policies, but they may not use classified data for course credit, theses, or dissertations. If a student intends to use material from a classified project for a thesis or dissertation, the supervising faculty member must advise the student that they will not be permitted to use any data that would cause the thesis or dissertation to be restricted from dissemination. Dissemination is interpreted to mean "availability to anyone without restriction."

  3. With the exception of the Campus Security Office, the existence on campus of areas restricted because of classified research is prohibited.

  4. In the event that a conflict arises concerning the interpretation of existing UNM policies and rules with respect to classified research, an appeal will be heard by the chair of the Research Policy Committee and the Vice President for Research. At their discretion, they may request the Research Policy Committee to appoint an ad hoc committee to further deal with the problem. If the conflict cannot be resolved, the route of further appeals would be the President and the Regents.