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International Collaborations

International Agreements

The University of Michigan supports a broad range of global activities – from individual research collaborations and scholarly visits among faculty members to larger platforms for student programs and joint research projects or laboratories. Many of these activities can flourish without written agreements. But in some cases, a written contract may be needed. The following resources will guide you in determining when a written agreement is needed and walk you through the process of drafting/legal review/approval/U-M signature. Additional questions can be addressed to the Provost’s Office:


What is an International Agreement?

An international agreement is a document that defines the terms of cooperation between the University of Michigan and another institution or organization. The Board of Regents is the legal governing body for the University and has delegated official signature authority for international agreements to the Provost’s Office, the Office of Research, and Procurement Services, depending on the type and scope of the agreement. Please note that agreement documents signed by individual U-M employees who do not have official signature authority for the Regents are not valid.


Proposing International Agreements for Academic Cooperation and Educational Programs

Any U-M faculty or staff member may submit a proposal for an international agreement for academic cooperation or educational programs. Ideally, proposals will be made in consultation with the unit-level international office and/or the Provost’s Office Global Engagement Team to determine:

  • The value propositions to the U-M and international institution
  • Potential for institutional support (financial/educational) for the proposed activities
  • The scope and scale of U-M student and faculty interest in the proposed activities
  • Whether a formal agreement and associated legal review are needed for the proposed cooperation
  • Appropriate signing authority for the proposed agreement (Provost’s Office, UMOR, or Procurement Services)

These guidelines apply to international agreements for academic cooperation and educational programs, e.g., affiliation, memoranda of understanding, memoranda of agreement, non-binding contracts, and any amendments or addenda to such documents. Agreements for international sponsored research and data use should follow UMOR procedures for sponsored projects or unfunded agreements. Contracts/invoices for international programs should follow procurement procedures.

The Vice Provost signs all Ann Arbor campus academic/educational agreements for Engaged Learning on behalf of the Provost and the Board of Regents. The appropriate Chancellor or authorized delegate should sign Flint and Dearborn agreements.

Types of Agreements

Depending on the nature of the collaboration, the agreement review and signature process will vary. Learn about the processes for academic cooperation and educational programs agreements, sponsored projects and research agreements, and contracts for vendor goods and services.

Types of Agreements

Establishing an Agreement

The filing process for academic cooperation and educational programs agreements can take at least eight weeks. Review all steps and find templates for quicker and more efficient processing.

Establishing an Agreement