The necessity of the Faculty's resolving allegations with care and objectivity, with ample opportunity for all interested parties to be heard, and as promptly as the circumstances permit.
The Office of the Dean shall have principal responsibility for assessing a proper response to allegations1 of misconduct concerning faculty appointees and fellows. To enable the Office of the Dean to meet this responsibility, all allegations of misconduct, whether initially received by a department head or other person, shall be promptly brought to the attention of the Office of the Dean (and where appropriate, the chief executive officer of an affiliated institution) unless they are clearly frivolous or otherwise lacking in substance.
Upon receipt of an allegation of misconduct, the Office of the Dean and, in those instances where the faculty member has a dual appointment, the chief executive officer of the other institution, shall determine, after such consultation as may seem appropriate, whether primary responsibility for resolving the allegation rests with the Faculty or with another institution. For example, primary responsibility for resolving an allegation of misconduct in connection with care of a patient would ordinarily reside in a hospital. In the case of an allegation pertaining to externally funded research, primary responsibility ordinarily rests with the institution that has administered the research grant or contract. An affiliated institution that has received support for research by a Harvard appointee may request, however, that allegations related to research by such appointees be dealt with by the Medical School. In any case, where the interests of two or more institutions are significantly implicated, it is expected that such inquiry and any investigation will proceed with the simultaneous participation of all concerned institutions, with agreement regarding which institution bears primary responsibility.
If primary responsibility rests with the Faculty, the Office of the Dean shall determine whether, taking into account the nature of the allegation, it is appropriate to attempt to resolve the matter through informal processes and discussions. The affected department head shall ordinarily have the responsibility for such efforts. Final resolution through informal means shall require the approval of the Office of the Dean. When primary responsibility rests with an affiliated institution, notice of resolution should be transmitted to the Office of the Dean.