1. Statement of Policy
This is a statement of USAID policy on publication, or release to parties other than those specifically authorized, of unclassified materials gathered or developed under contracts with academic institutions.
2. Underlying Principles
USAID favors and encourages the publication of scholarly research as well as the maximum availability, distribution, and use of knowledge developed in its program.
This policy statement does not deal with material that is classified for security reasons. It does deal with considerations of national interest, not of sufficient gravity to warrant security classification, but serious enough to affect adversely the conduct of assistance programs. Consequently, in addition to the requirements of courtesy, propriety, and confidence which normally guide scholars in their work, there should also be consideration of the potential repercussions of publication on the successful execution of development and other cooperative programs in which the United States and foreign countries are involved.
3. Operational Definitions
The Agency draws a distinction between two kinds of manuscripts, which a scholar may wish to publish:
(a) A report which is prepared and delivered to the Agency under the terms of the contract (a “contract manuscript”); and
(b) An article or book based upon experience and information gained under an USAID contract but not prepared or delivered under the contract (a “non-contract manuscript”).
There are two kinds of actions, to be specified in the contract, which the Agency can take upon notification of a contractor’s desire to publish:
(a) Comment only, under which USAID and the foreign government involved may review the manuscript, and have their comments considered seriously by the contractor prior to publication; and
(b) Authorization for release, which USAID may withhold if reconciliation between the national interest and the author’s interest is impossible.
4. Policy Statements
(a) USAID, as a general rule, will not require an academic institution to obtain permission to publish the written work produced under a contract. It will ask for the opportunity to review the manuscript for comment only, prior to publication.
In the case of a contract manuscript, USAID reserves the right to disclaim endorsement of the opinions expressed; if it is a non-contract manuscript, USAID reserves the right to dissociate itself from sponsorship or publication.
(b) On the other hand, USAID may reserve the right of authorization for release in those exceptional cases where conditions exist making it reasonably foreseeable, in light of the contract’s scope of work and the manner and place of performance, that the written work to be prepared and delivered under the contract may have adverse repercussions on the relations and programs of the United States. Where this right is reserved, it must be so specified in the contract. In determining where to reserve such right, USAID will consider all relevant factors, includi ng:
(1) The extent to which prompt and full performance of the contract will require access, facilitated by reason of the contract, to information not generally available to scholars;
(2) The extent to which the work involves matters of political concern to foreign countries, particularly where any substantial part of the work is to be performed therein;
(3) The extent to which, by reason of USAID’s close involvement and cooperation in the performance of the contract, the work product may be so identified with USAID itself as to prevent effective disclaimer of USAID endorsement thereof;
(4) The extent to which the objective of the contract is to provide advice to USAID or to a foreign government of immediate operational significance in the conduct of the USAID program or the implementation of governmental programs in the host country;
(5) The desires of the host country.
The successful implementation of this policy on publication rests on a thorough understanding and acceptance of these principles by USAID and the prospective contractor. The actual publications provision for a particular contract, then, would be so worded as to reflect the agreement reached in the contract negotiations.
USAID’s concern with non-contract manuscripts is related to the identification of a manuscript with the U.S. Government. This concern will be modified by the passage of time following termination of the contract.
In the normal case of prepublication review for USAID comment, the institution will submit a copy of the manuscript not later than the date of submission to the publisher. This gives the Agency time to comment if it is deemed appropriate.
However, in the case of review for authorization, timely notification of USAID’s response will be given, consistent with the size of the manuscript and the number and location of the parties involved.
The Agency will make every effort to expedite this review procedure in accordance with the underlying principle described at the beginning of this policy statement.