policy

Building Science Institute, Ltd. Co. Policy 05-2021 Conflicts of Interest

This policy applies to Verification Organizations, the Building Science Institute, Ltd. Co., and the Building Science Institute Quality Council.

Referenced Documents

Building Science Institute Policy 06-2021 Impartiality & Objectivity
Building Science Institute Policy 09-2021 General Requirements for Verification Organizations
Building Science Institute Process 001-2021 Ethics Compliance & Homeowner Inquiry Resolution
Building Science Institute Process 005-2022 Perform Quality Control Conformity Assessments for Verification Organizations


What is a Conflict of Interest

A conflict of interest in the context of this policy is a circumstance that creates a risk that professional judgment or actions regarding the certification of individuals, homes, or the integrity of the ENERGY STAR® New Homes program and the Building Science Institute's Quality Management System of policies, processes, and procedures, will be unduly influenced by a secondary interest that threatens or appears to threaten the impartiality and independence of the certification systems and Quality Management oversight by the Building Science Institute.
The existence of a conflict of interest is NOT evidence of misconduct.


Secondary Interests

Secondary interests include, but are not limited to, work in:

  • mechanical system design
  • moisture control consulting
  • indoor air quality consulting
  • civil engineering
  • architectural design
  • residential development
  • residential construction
  • real estate sales
  • real estate financing
  • utility consulting
  • building material manufacturing, sales, or installation
  • HVAC equipment manufacturing, sales, or installation
  • energy simulation software development
  • direct management of employees who perform verifications

Secondary interests also include, but are not limited to, common ownership of companies engaged in such work and pay schemes for Verifiers and Software Analysts that may threaten or appear to threaten their conformance with Building Science Institute Policy 06-2021 Impartiality & Objectivity  or Policy 09-2021 General Requirements for Verification Organizations .


Conflict of Interest Mitigation

Disclosure & Review

Verification organization conflicts of interest must be disclosed to and reviewed annually by the Building Science Institute's True North Quality Management Services. Verification organization conflicts of interest must be disclosed by the Verification Organization to their clients after successful review by True North Quality Management Services.
Building Science Institute conflicts of interest are disclosed to and reviewed annually by the Building Science Institute's Quality Council and must be disclosed to Building Science Institute clients and the EPA ENERGY STAR®  New Homes team.
Building Science Institute Quality Council conflicts of interest are disclosed to and reviewed annually by the Building Science Institute's independent legal counsel and must be disclosed to the Building Science Institute General Manager and the EPA ENERGY STAR®  New Homes team.


Recusal

A conflict of interest may be mitigated by the individual or organization with the conflicting interests recusing themselves from the circumstance that creates the conflict.


Removal

A conflict of interest may be mitigated by the individual or organization removing themselves from the circumstance that creates the conflict so that conflict of interest is eliminated going forward.


How Conflict of Interest Policy Violations are Determined

Conflict of interest policy violations are determined through objective evidence uncovered during routine quality management work or conformity assessments performed under Building Science Institute Process 05-2021 . If objective evidence supports that a risk or appearance of risk to the impartiality and independence of a Verification Organization, the Building Science Institute, or the Building Science Institute's Quality Council was NOT mitigated through disclosure and review, recusal, or removal, the reviewer must report the failure to disclose, recuse, or remove in conformance with Building Science Institute Process 01-2021 Ethics Compliance and Homeowner Inquiry Resolution .
Objective evidence must be recorded and verifiable. Evidence must be verified by at least two of the following:

  • Documents and records
  • Verbal statements
  • Repeated observations

Conflict of Interest Disclosure Records

Conflict of interest disclosure records are publicly available on the Building Science Institute website, co- located with the publicly available information on Verification Organizations, the Building Science Institute, and the Building Science Institute's Quality Council.


Approved by the Building Science Institute Quality Council on November 22, 2021
Not Voting: Brett Dillon, Chair
Approve: Amber Wood, Kevin Burk, Brian Christensen, Mat Gates
Reject: None

Copyright © 2021 by Building Science Institute, Ltd. Co.


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