International Agreements Guidelines

Approval and Signing Process

Types of Agreements

Penn State uses three types of agreements for international collaborations Letter of Intent (LOI) A Letter of Intent (LOI) is a non-binding statement that acknowledges intent to explore the possibility of collaboration. LOIs are appropriate when a new project is being initiated, upon first meeting new international partners, or in connection with a one-time project. The LOI can serve as a signal of good will or a signal of the willingness to discuss the opportunities to cooperate further.  At this stage, it would generally be premature to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA). The LOI must be based on the pre-approved Penn State template because this template requires fewer signatures and approval steps and can usually be completed very quickly. Absolutely no changes to the template may be made.

Types of Collaborations

There are many kinds of collaborations between Penn State and international counterparts. Some require formal agreements, while others do not. The following is a brief overview of the more common types of collaborations, with links to more detailed explanations.