Support from commercial companies

The Sainsbury Laboratory is substantially funded from charitable and other public sources, but some of the work of the Laboratory is also supported by commercial companies which are invited to sponsor particular research programs.

The Laboratory welcomes such support because it extends the benefits of charitable and Government funding and enables collaborations. These collaborations introduce valuable new scientific resources to the work of the Laboratory’s scientists. Research relations with commercial companies also provide a crucial route through which the Laboratory is able to apply scientific discoveries to deliver practical public benefits for food production, agriculture and the environment worldwide.

Relations with commercial companies can only be successful in delivering such benefits when they are conducted with mutual regard for the needs and priorities of the respective partners. On the Laboratory’s side, this means that that such relations cannot conflict with either the Laboratory’s ethical code or its mission to undertake basic scientific research of the highest quality.

In particular, the Laboratory monitors and regulates situations in which a relationship with a commercial company might support a divergence between the private interests of a member of the Laboratory and his or her professional obligations. The Sainsbury Laboratory does not permit its members to derive significant personal financial benefit from any scientific relations between the Laboratory and a Commercial Company, and prohibits any such scientific relations if the Laboratory member concerned has a significant financial interest in the Commercial Company.