The institution must execute the SMART IRB Agreement, which is done by signing a document called a “Joinder Agreement.” Because the Agreement is open to participation by any institution that meets the eligibility criteria, and institutions may join at different times, there is not a single central execution document and there are no founding parties or institutions. Rather, each institution signs a separate Joinder Agreement to establish itself as a party to the terms (rights and obligations) set forth in the SMART IRB Agreement document. In the Joinder Agreement, the institution agrees to abide by all of those terms, agrees that it may accept and rely on the review of any of the IRBs of other Participating Institutions and that other Participating Institutions may rely on the review of its IRB (as applicable), and represents and warrants that it meets all SMART IRB eligibility criteria for participation.
When you are ready to join, a representative from your institution should complete the online institution registration process. This person should be someone who has the authority to represent the institution in regard to IRB reliance arrangements. The registration process will generate an institution-specific Joinder Agreement, which may be downloaded and signed by the appropriate Institution Official. The executed Joinder Agreement may then be delivered to SMART IRB by uploading an electronic file (e.g. PDF) of the signed document. NOTE: further instructions on this process will be provided when institutions receive their institution-specific link to the Joinder System; any interested parties should download the SMART IRB Agreement to be notified when sign-on is available for their institution.
The Effective Date of the Agreement with respect to any Participating Institution is the Effective Date of its Joinder Agreement, as identified in the Joinder Agreement; however, the Participating Institution’s actual participation in any activities under the Agreement first requires activation of participation as described further in other FAQs. See above steps for joining SMART IRB.