Faculty Resources

The BD team provides 1:1 support to faculty researchers and study teams based within the Medical School who have an interest in collaborating with Industry. We help to identify partnerships and maintain clear communication with the sponsor from project conception through execution. We provide business guidance to faculty to ensure alignment of expectations, reduction of risk, and overall partnership structures that are win-win for the company and the PI.

Click on the video to learn more about our Business Development services.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the different ways of working with industry on my research?
There are many ways that our faculty can partner with industry sponsors all along the translational research pipeline including consulting, other sponsored activities (OSA), sponsored research, Investigator Initiated Trials, and Industry Initiated Clinical Trials. The FFMI BD team is here to help facilitate the successful execution of each of these different types of partnerships.

Should I negotiate the budget and contract for my industry project?
We recommend a team approach when engaging and negotiating with industry. Although it is not required to work with the FFMI BD team when negotiating, we are here to support all aspects of crafting a win-win deal between your research team and the industry partners.

Can the FFMI BD team help me with ITT concepts with industry?
The FFMI BD team provides support to meet the specific needs of your project. We can provide company contacts, or help to negotiate deals for sponsorship, access to study drugs, or in-kind services such as sequencing. Reach out to the FFMI BD team to explore your options.

Why do industry partners want to work with academic researchers?
Industry partners work with academic researchers who have specific expertise, tools, or resources that complement their in-house capabilities and support their strategic goals.

Financial support for research
One of the biggest benefits of working with industry is the financial support they provide for your research. This alternate funding stream can be key as federal funding is becoming more and more competitive to obtain.

Access to investigational drugs, devices, assays, and data
Working with Industry may help you gain access to new drugs, devices, or assays to test in your lab. By working with Industry on developing products, you may also gain access to important data from these products that may support your research goals.

No, only personnel with Regental Signature Authority, such as ORSP or U-M Legal, can sign on behalf of University of Michigan. Therefore, any legal document with the intention to bind the University of Michigan to an obligation should not be signed by U-M research faculty or staff.

Yes, there are many ways to work with industry that yield benefits for both parties. These fee-for-service agreements can generate preliminary data which may support future sponsored research opportunities.

No, a conflict of Interest (COI) does not mean a University of Michigan investigator cannot work with industry. Any potential conflicts should be reviewed and managed by the Medical School’s Regulatory Affairs Office (UMMS-RegAffairs@med.umich.edu).

Yes, consulting is allowed. Typically, companies compensate investigators for their professional expertise to guide strategy or interpretation of results. University of Michigan has policies that govern consulting activities. Please watch our video to learn more or contact the FFMI BD team to facilitate.

Yes, the terms of these deals determine what type of agreement and potential committee reviews would be required. Please watch our video or visit the Data & Biospecimen Sharing website.

Ways to Work with Industry

Business Development Roadmap Quick Guide

Working with Industry Quick Guide

Sponsored Research & Other Sponsored Activities Basics Quick Guide

Industry Trials Quick Guide

Data & Biospecimans with Industry Quick Guide

Consulting for Industry Quick Guide

Additional Faculty Resources


Have questions about academic-industry partnerships at the University of Michigan? Contact us at FFMI-BusDev@umich.edu.