Team information Steering Committees Research Steering Committee Constitution for the Research Steering Committee Membership Members will be appointed to advise the trustees on CLEFT’s research funding activity. They will be appointed for 3 years in the first instance subject to renewal. It is intended that membership will reflect the disciplines involved in the care of patients with cleft lip and palate and related conditions, and include patient/parent representatives. The Chair and Vice-Chair will be trustees and will be voting members if necessary. Apart from the Chair and Vice-Chair, trustee members of the committee can vote only once – either in the committee meeting or the trustees’ meeting. Other trustees may attend the meetings as non-voting members. Quorum for meetings A quorum should be 50% of voting members plus 1. The chair and vice-chair are part of the quorum. Voting Voting will be by majority. Role and responsibilities of members A. Members will advise trustees on matters concerning the second charitable objective of CLEFT as registered with the Charity Commission: TO RELIEVE THE SUFFERING OF AND PROMOTE AND PROTECT THE PHYSICAL AND MENTAL HEALTH OF PATIENTS AFFECTED BY CLEFT LIP AND PALATE AND RELATED CONDITIONS BY SUPPORTING RESEARCH IN DESIGNATED CLEFT CENTRES WITHIN THE UK AND IN OVERSEAS CENTRES SUPPORTED BY CLEFT INTO THE CAUSES AND METHODS OF TREATMENTS AVAILABLE. This will include: Advising the trustees on the best use of undesignated research funds. Encouraging the development of research projects, especially clinical research projects, in UK cleft centres and in overseas centres supported by CLEFT. Ensuring that all projects supported by CLEFT: have ethical approval; have registered the project with the NIHR Cleft and Craniofacial Conditions Clinical Studies Group (for projects in UK centres). Offering feedback regarding projects, including: advising where there may be similarities with projects from other centres, and where cooperation or joint projects would strengthen proposals; agreeing realistic time-scales with the researchers; ensuring that each project has a realistic funding proposal. Working with the CLEFT International Steering Group to ensure that projects in overseas centres are 'owned' by that centre. Following the progress of projects and offering advice if there are delays. Where funds are to be raised by the local team, ensuring, with the CLEFT fundraising team, that the project has a realistic plan for fund-raising with a clear fall back plan if the target is not met in the agreed time frame. Advising on the appropriate use of funds if projects cannot be completed. B. Confidentiality Members will behave with integrity with regard to research proposals. Research proposals will remain confidential, and members will not plagiarise ideas identified in research proposals submitted or discussed as part of their role on the committee, whether those proposals are funded or not. C. Conflicts of Interest It is incumbent upon members of the committee to declare any conflicts of interest regarding research proposals submitted. Where a committee member is involved in a research proposal that is submitted to the committee for funding or funding support, they will recuse themselves from discussion of the proposal and voting on the proposal. They may be asked to leave the meeting room for the duration of this discussion. D. Mode of working It is planned that most meetings of the steering committee will be held remotely, arranged by the Chair, and as frequently as required – perhaps 4 monthly initially approximately 2 weeks before the trustees’ meeting. If possible, one meeting per year will be face-to-face, perhaps at the time of the annual meeting of the Craniofacial Society of Great Britain and Ireland.