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Ethics, Human Rights, Nondiscrimination, and Human Research Protection

At RTI International, we believe that all staff members have a personal responsibility to ensure that our behavior reflects our shared values of respect for the individual, respect for RTI, integrity, fiscal responsibility, excellence, innovation, and objectivity. The Code of Conduct, covering a wide range of policies and standards for our organization, applies to everyone who works for RTI. The principles in our Code of Conduct guide us in maintaining the highest ethical standards as we pursue our vision to become the world’s leading independent research organization.

 Tim J. Gabel, President and CEO

Ethics and Code of Conduct

The RTI Code of Conduct establishes our steadfast commitment to the highest ethical and business standards.

RTI's Code of Conduct serves as a guide for everyone working on behalf of RTI to help ensure that RTI conducts our work ethically and in adherence with all applicable laws and regulations.

Our Code of Conduct includes information on various topics, including conducting business in a manner that respects and supports the rights inherent to all people. RTI's Code of Conduct clearly prohibits human trafficking.

Reporting Concerns

Ethics concerns may be reported anonymously through the RTI Ethics Office by telephone at +1 919 541 7070 or toll free at 877-212-7220, by email to ethics@rti.org, or by submitting a report to our online Ethics Helpline. Our reporting Helpline is always available, allows for anonymous reporting, and is accessible in multiple languages. You can access the RTI Ethics Helpline here

Human Rights

RTI is committed to conducting business in a manner that respects and supports the rights inherent to all human beings, whatever their nationality, place of residence, gender identity, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, language or any other status, and as further detailed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. 


RTI is committed to a policy of non-discrimination in the conduct of programs and activities, including meeting its responsibilities under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; the Age Discrimination Act of 1975; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; and Section 13 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972), U.S. Department of Homeland Security Regulation 6 C.F.R. Part 19, and other applicable laws. RTI does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, age, or sex in administration of its programs or activities.

RTI is committed to providing persons with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in and benefit from programs, activities, and services provided by RTI to the public. Persons with disabilities may request reasonable accommodations from RTI that they believe will enable them to have such equal opportunity to participate in our programs, activities, and services. To request reasonable accommodation, contact RTI’s Title VI Coordinator as provided below. If you believe that you have been discriminated against with respect to employment or other RTI staff behavior, you may contact RTI's Ethics Office by telephone at 919-541-7070 or toll free at 877-212-7220, by email to ethics@rti.org, or by submitting a report to our online Ethics Helpline. Our reporting Helpline is always available, allows for anonymous reporting, and is accessible in multiple languages. You can access the RTI Ethics Helpline here

If you believe that you have been discriminated against with respect to programs or activities, you may contact RTI's Title VI Coordinator, Corey Hatchell, by email at TitleVICoord@rti.org, or by submitting a report to our online Ethics Helpline. RTI is committed to the prompt and fair resolution of Title VI discriminatory complaints. The Title VI coordinator e-mail box will be monitored at a frequency no less than weekly for complaint reporting.  Complaints filed within 180 days of the occurrence will routinely be reviewed within 30 days of receipt, investigated, and resolved within 60 days, and the individual filing the complaint contacted with a final decision within 90 days of acknowledged receipt. Individuals will be informed of extenuating circumstances requiring additional time or information to support resolution of investigations. 

If you require assistance in filing a complaint, whether due to disability, limited English proficiency, or other reason, please contact either the RTI’s Ethics Office or Title VI Coordinator to request assistance.

RTI prohibits intimidation and retaliation intended to interfere with any right or privilege provided by law or in response to the filing of a grievance, question, or complaint. Claims of intimidation and retaliation will be handled promptly and fairly, and in the same manner as other claims of discrimination.

Financial Conflict of Interest

Our Financial Conflict of Interest policy helps ensure that RTI personnel avoid situations in which personal interests may affect, or have the appearance of affecting, their professional judgment in exercising their duties or responsibilities, or in conducting or reporting research. Our policy provides guidance to help personnel manage situations in their personal affairs, employment outside RTI, and financial activities that may appear to conflict with their responsibilities to RTI and our clients. RTI personnel, including RTI governors, officers, and employees, are expected to promptly disclose the circumstances of any situation that might create even the appearance of a conflict. For the purpose of this policy, “RTI personnel” is defined to include RTI governors, officers, and employees. Failure to comply with this policy and associated procedures may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment with RTI. RTI contractors are required to provide evidence that they comply with their organization's conflict of interest policy. If a contractor does not have a conflict of interest policy in place, RTI will provide training and reviews as needed.

Investigators are expected to timely complete the required FCOI training and complete and submit the SFI Disclosure Form.

Human Research Protection

RTI is committed to protecting the rights, welfare, and privacy of individuals who participate in our research studies, as well as the confidentiality of biologic sample and other data collected during these studies.

Our approach to protecting human subjects is guided by the ethical principles and guidelines outlined in the Belmont Report: respect for persons, beneficence, and justice. The RTI Office of Research Protection maintains three in-house Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) with relevant and required expertise, which meet regularly. We also have broad experience in collaborating with other institutions and interacting with their IRBs.

RTI maintains a Federalwide Assurance (FWA No. 3331) from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) for the protection of human subjects in research. Pursuant to the FWA, federally funded human subjects research should conform to 45 CFR 46 and any other applicable guidance documents. In addition, RTI complies as needed with specific federal regulations and policies of other agencies. These include, but are not limited to, the Food and Drug Administration, Department of Defense, Department of Navy, National Science Foundation, Public Health Service, Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Education, Department of Energy, and Department of Justice. Our IRB committees are also registered with OHRP for research regulated by the Department of Health and Human Services and the Food and Drug Administration.

The RTI IRBs are responsible for ensuring that the rights of research participants are protected and that studies conducted by our researchers comply with applicable federal regulations governing research with human subjects. This includes fully informing research subjects of the risks and benefits of participation, and obtaining legally effective, informed consent from subjects prior to their participation and documenting consent in accordance with applicable regulations.

Our Office of Research Protection requires that designated RTI researchers, as well as all IRB members and IRB staff, complete the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative's web-based training on the protection of human research subjects.

Questions about a Study or Your Rights as a Research Participant

If you have been contacted to participate in a study and have questions, please contact the study’s research team. Contact information is included in the invitation or request to participate in the study.

If you have been contacted about participating in an RTI Survey/Study, and have a question, feedback, or concern, please contact RTI through the phone number or email provided with the survey/study letter or materials. If you cannot find this contact information, please click here to send a message to RTI's survey team. Please include your name, how we may contact you, and the name of the survey/study, if you know it. Please note that by clicking "send," you are consenting to have RTI store the information you submit so that we can respond to your inquiry or concern. RTI will only use the details you provide to provide an appropriate response to your request for information or feedback.

If you have any questions about your rights as a study participant, contact our Office of Research Protection at 1 866 214 2043 or email us.