For Rutgers Faculty

Rutgers Global–Partnerships works closely with faculty and staff seeking to develop international agreements with institutions and organizations around the world. The Partnerships unit has developed the following tools and resources to help streamline (and hopefully demystify) this process for all stakeholders:

  • A five-step process to help simplify and clarify the steps that need to be taken to develop a new agreement
  • General processing timelines for faculty coordinators and partners to prepare for
  • International partnership agreement proposal and renewal forms to capture pertinent information regarding potential partnerships, and ensure approval from relevant academic leadership has been confirmed
  • Agreement or MOU templates
  • Activity report templates
  • FAQs

It is important to note that not all activities that take place in conjunction with an international partner requires the development of a formal agreement. Please see “Agreement Types and Templates” for more information.

International Agreement Proposal and Approval Process

The Partnerships unit of Rutgers Global has developed a five-step process to help faculty and staff navigate their way through the phases of creating a new international agreement. The process remains the same for the renewal of a retiring agreement, with the exception of Step 1. 

View a diagram of the approval process below.

International Agreement Proposal and Approval Process

TIMELINE

The time required to move from the initial stages of proposing a potential new partnership, through the review and approval process of an agreement, to the collection of signatures, ranges from several weeks to several months. Factors that influence how long this process will take could include:

- the complexity of the proposed agreement 
- the type of activities or program being proposed
- if the template being used belongs to Rutgers or the partner
- the number and significance of changes proposed by the partner institution

In general, the average turnaround time for agreements from the initial inquiry stage to the finalization stage is as follows:

- Processing of International Agreement Proposal Form: 1–2 weeks
- Rutgers Agreement template processed with minimal changes to terms: 3–6 weeks
- Non-Rutgers Agreement template processed OR Rutgers Agreement template processed with significant changes proposed: 2–6 months
- Collection of signatures from Rutgers’ and Partners’ signatories: 1–4 weeks

TOTAL APPROXIMATE TIME FOR RUTGERS’ TEMPLATE: 1-2 months
TOTAL APPROXIMATE TIME FOR NON-RUTGERS’ TEMPLATE: 3-6 months

Additional Information

International Agreement Proposal Form +

All faculty members who are requesting new international agreements must first complete the International Agreement Proposal Form (PDF). This form collects pertinent information about the proposed agreement and is used by reviewers in Rutgers Global, Office of General Counsel, and the Office of the Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs. This form also ensures that leadership of relevant academic units (i.e. Chairs and Deans) have been informed of the proposed activities and their approvals have been secured before the agreement moves beyond the initial stages.

All faculty members who are requesting the renewal of an international agreement must first complete the International Agreement Renewal Form (PDF).

Faculty from units within the School of Arts and Sciences may also be asked to complete a supplemental form from SAS.

Faculty who are proposing agreements which include graduate student mobility may also be asked to complete a supplemental form from the School of Graduate Studies.

Agreement Types and Templates +

The templates included here have been developed by Rutgers Global–Partnerships in consultation with the Office of General Counsel (OGC) and the Office of the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs (EVPAA), and their use is strongly encouraged. Using an approved template streamlines the review and approval process and ensures consistency and inclusion of key requirements and preferences. If a partner institution prefers that its own agreement template be used, Rutgers Global–Partnerships will work with the faculty coordinator to “merge” the documents, ensuring that critical elements from each are incorporated into the final draft.

The General Cooperation Agreement/Memorandum of Understanding is Rutgers’ most frequently used template, and it addresses a range of common activities, including faculty mobility, graduate student mobility, and basic research collaborations. This template is appropriate to use when both parties have a fairly clear vision of what their partnership will entail. The RBHS General Cooperation Agreement/Memorandum of Understanding was created for RBHS units, and includes relevant clinical and other provisions specific to partnership issues that should be addressed by these units.

The Abbreviated General Cooperation Agreement/Memorandum of Understanding is a more basic version of the General Cooperation Agreement, and is used when parties want to confirm mutual interest in a partnership, but have not yet established the particulars of that partnership. This template is similar to a letter of intent, and most often, a separate agreement describing the partnership in more detail will follow the signing of an Abbreviated General Cooperation Agreement.

A 3+2 collaborative degree program uses our Cooperative Education Program template, and is appropriate when a cooperative degree program is developed, in which a student spends three years at the partner institution and two years at Rutgers, respectively. This typically leads to an undergraduate degree from the partner institution and a master’s degree from Rutgers. This template can be used as a base for other types of double/dual degree programs (i.e. 3+1). Curriculum articulation is a pre-requisite for this type of agreement.

Agreements which include any of the following will need to be addressed under a separate, more detailed agreement:

  • undergraduate student mobility or student exchange
  • reciprocal faculty exchange
  • specific research projects
  • specific training or technical assistance programs

Reporting +

An essential component of maintaining and sustaining international partnerships is evaluation and assessment of agreements that support those partnerships. Tracking successful activities and initiatives, as well as those that have been less than successful, allows best practices for our institution to be established, and directs us to adjust our approaches when necessary. Intermittent activity reports and end of cycle reports will be requested as needed.

FAQs +

Why must this approval process be followed?

International agreements can be complex and often require multiple stakeholders to provide necessary expertise. Rutgers Global—Partnerships will ensure agreements are routed to the necessary stakeholders for their input. Additionally, review and approval from Rutgers Global, the Office of General Counsel (OGC), and the Office of the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs (EVPAA) is required for all international agreements provided to the EVPAA for signature.

Who must sign an international agreement which goes through the Rutgers Global review and approval process?

All international agreements processed by Rutgers Global must be signed by the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs (EVPAA). Additionally, if the agreement is developed through a specific Rutgers’ unit, it must also be signed by the Dean and Provost or Chancellor with oversight for that unit.

How long will the agreement negotiation and approval process take?

The time required to move from the initial stages of proposing a potential new partnership, through the review and approval process of an agreement, to the collection of signatures, ranges from several weeks to several months. Factors that influence how long this process will take could include:

  • the complexity of the proposed agreement
  • the type of activities or program being proposed
  • if the template being used belongs to Rutgers or the partner
  • the number and significance of changes proposed by the partner institution.

Please see the timeline above for more information.

What if the collaborating institution wants to use its template instead of a Rutgers’ template?

Rutgers strongly encourages use of its templates for international agreements. Alternative templates may be proposed, but may or may not be acceptable without significant revision. All non-Rutgers templates require significantly more time for review and editing before being approved. This most often results in a longer timeframe for the approval process.

Are there any international agreements that Rutgers Global does not process?

Yes. The Office of Research and Economic Development (ORED) includes a number of units that process agreements which could include international entities:

The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) works with faculty and staff seeking funding from public and private not-for-profit sponsors;

Sponsored Research Agreements (formally Office of Corporate Contracts (OCC)) coordinates details of materials transfer agreements; and

Export Control issues Visiting Scientist and Visiting Student agreements for unpaid researchers.

If you are unsure whether your agreement needs to be processed through Rutgers Global, contact Rutgers Global—Partnerships, and we will help you assess which unit of the university is most appropriate.  

What is the process for renewing or terminating a partnership?

To renew an agreement, complete the International Agreement Renewal Form and submit it to Rutgers Global—Partnerships. The renewal proposal process is the same as that for new agreements. If the partnership has proven successful and of high-quality, and the terms of the original agreement remain current with limited revisions required, the timeline for approval can be fairly short.

Each agreement has a termination clause which specifies the process and notification requirements for termination. If there is a decision to terminate an active agreement prior to its natural expiration, contact the Partnerships unit for guidance at partnerships@global.rutgers.edu.