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Establishing Institutional-Level International Agreements


The University of Kansas strongly supports the establishment of relationships with international institutions in service of the University’s academic, co-curricular, and research missions. This policy articulates the requirements for developing an institutional-level Agreement of Cooperation (AOC).

Applies to: 

Faculty and staff

Juniper Gardens
Medical Center, Kansas City
Policy Statement: 

International research, collaboration, and mobility frequently necessitate institution-to-institution agreements. An Agreement of Cooperation (AOC) is a legally non-binding university-level agreement that indicates an intent to cooperate and may facilitate joint activities, but does not involve commitment of KU resources. An AOC serves as a foundation for further, more specific collaborative partnership development with international institutions of higher education (for KULC and KUMC) and international organizations (KUMC only); it may also be part of a bid for competitive external funding or enhanced levels of institutional support.

Employees who wish to establish an AOC with an international (non-US-based) entity must initiate the AOC process with KU International Affairs (KUIA-KULC) or KUMC Office of International Programs (OIP-KUMC) accordingly. KUIA-KULC will arrange for General Counsel approval of the agreement language, and secure signatures from the the KULC Senior Internationalization Officer, the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor, and the Chancellor.

OIP-KUMC has established approved templates and will facilitate General Counsel approval of any changes to the agreement language and secure signatures from the KUMC Senior International Officer, the Executive Vice Chancellor, and the Chancellor.

In accordance with University policy, KUIA-KULC or OIP-KUMC will initiate appropriate Restricted Party Screenings (RPS) of the international entity and its agreement signatories. Any non-English-language AOCs must also include a certified English translation. AOC procedures are available on the KUIA-KULC website or KUMC’s Agreements for Cultural, Education, & Research Cooperation website.

For further information concerning activities that may necessitate an AOC contact the respective unit as noted in the contact section of this policy.

Once an AOC is finalized, employees or units planning to engage in international research or programming may need to take additional steps or develop subsequent agreements, depending on the type of proposed project.

Exclusions or Special Circumstances: 

At KULC, partnerships with international for-profit or non-educational entities do not require an AOC, but are subject to other requirements. Contact the Office of the General Counsel for guidance at gencoun@ku.edu. Sponsored program contracts will be handled as outlined in the Contract Review and Signature Authority policy, Section E: Processing of Grant-Funded Contracts Related to Sponsored Programs.


Lawrence Campus Contact:
International Affairs

Medical Center Contact:
Office of International Programs

Approved by: 
Approved on: 
Thursday, August 18, 2022
Effective on: 
Thursday, August 18, 2022
Review Cycle: 
Annual (As Needed)

Agreement of Cooperation (AOC): sometimes also referred to as a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), this is a legally non-binding agreement indicating an intent to collaborate with an international higher education institution (for KULC and KUMC) or international organization (KUMC only). An AOC does not involve commitment of KU resources.

Agreements, AOC, MOU, Agreement of Cooperation, Memorandum of Understanding, International, Signature, Translation, International Relationships
Change History: 

11/09/2022: Policy published in the Policy Library.

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