Research Administration for Department Administrators

Research Administration for Department Administrators
Bob Andresen – Assistant Director, Post-award Services
Research and Sponsored Programs
Diane Barrett – Associate Dean of Research
School of Human Ecology
Test Your Knowledge!
See True-False Questions
In your packet.
Give it a try just for fun.
Who We Are
Who You Are
– Pre-award?
– Post-award?
– Huh?
What Are Proposals?
Proposals (applications)
request support for a
defined activity.
• Some proposals are
abbreviated documents to be
used for discussion
– Concept papers
– White papers
• Formal proposals
• Some proposals are a two-stage
– Letter of inquiry (2-3 pages,
private foundations)
– Preliminary proposals; preproposals (used to screen
applications with only some
invited into second stage)
What Are Proposals: Formal Proposals
• Constructed
according to
established by
• Follow forms and
format required by
– Title/cover page
– Abstract
– Statement of work
– Personnel vitae
– Detailed budget with
– Facilities/resources statement
– Appendices
What Are Proposals: Formal Proposals
• Often 20-30 pages in length
• Competition for funding is intense
– Federal agencies: often only 20% are funded
• Timeframe from proposal submission to response:
– Federal may take nine months (or longer)
– Other sponsors may take less time
Often 2-3 months to write, 9 months until funding
outcome, and if not funded, one year lost!
Ways We Can Help Write a Proposal
• Assist in proposal planning
• Produce manuals on
proposal preparation
• Provide technical editing
• Provide release time to
write proposal
• Develop boilerplate
• Provide proposal
review/grant writing
• Develop pre-filled sponsor
• Encourage faculty to use
colleagues to review drafts
Prepare Budget
Write Proposal
Contact Sponsor
Determine Fund Priorities
Find Sponsor
Document Need
expected to
Identify Idea
We Aren’t Done Yet: BUDGET!
research, service,
• While writing the proposal (application, request for funding),
begin working on the budget
• Make sure proper sponsor forms and format are being used
• Get any compliance needs underway if needed
Let’s Talk Budgets
in General for a Moment
Budget Terminology
• Direct costs are those that can be
specifically identified with a single
sponsored project.
– Direct costs should be reflected by major
budget categories with an attached narrative
detailing how the costs were calculated.
• i.e., Salaries/Wages, Fringe Benefits, Contracted
Services, Supplies, Equipment, Travel, Tuition
Remission, and Participant Support costs.
Budget Terminology
• Facilities & Administrative Costs or
Indirect Costs
– Cost incurred by a grantee for common or joint
objectives and that therefore, cannot be identified
specifically with a particular project or program.
• i.e., Lights, Heat, Custodial Service, Library
Budget Terminology
• Cost Sharing
– Salary is the most frequent source of cost sharing.
– Cost Sharing is the difference between the effort
expended on a project and the effort that is paid by
a project.
– Cost sharing dollars can only be used once (can’t
count the same effort on two grants!) and must be
– Cost sharing cannot come from federal funds.
Remember This:
• An uninteresting and poorly thought-out
proposal is much more likely to be funded if
we throw in lots of cost-sharing.
Budget: Things to Think About
• Faculty think about:
– What salaries do I
We think about
– Non-federal Policies
• University policies
• State policies
• Non-profit policies
– What equipment
– Do I need to travel
– Who else is involved
– Industry policies
– Federal
• Government-wide OMB
Circulars, FARs
• Cost Accounting Standards
• Specific agencies
Budget Vignette
• “There has never been a soils map made of every national
park. I’d eventually like to visit each park and collect soil
samples for analysis. I expect this to take the rest of my
life, so I am planning to start with parks in the Southwest,
beginning in the first year with Arches and Canyonlands.
I’m hoping to have 3-4 grad students at a time working
with me at the sites, and I’ve been contacted by a
potential post-doc that is very excited about helping with
• Because we need to haul some equipment for analyzing
soil samples on-site, and we’ll also need camping supplies
and lots of water, which you have to haul into most of
Canyonlands, my mentor suggested we do as he did and
buy a used SUV that is devoted to the project. Is that
Some Marginally Useful Information
• Both Parks are near Moab,
• Canyonlands comprises
337,598 acres (527 square
miles); Arches is a small
park but more heavily
• The equipment needed is
less than $5000
• “Summers” means 3
months” @ 100%
• A certain type of assay
will have to be done by a
firm in Denver
• The closest airport is
Grand Junction, CO
• One of the grad students
transferred to your
university at the same
time the PI did – and has
the same last name
What Questions Should You Ask?
Think about what
questions you might
want to ask of the
faculty member
What other questions do
you need answered?
The Proposal Is IN!
Or is it?
research, service,
Awards are very competitive. Many Federal agencies are funding in
the low 20 percent range and may take 9-12 months from proposal
submission until notification. When notification of an award is
received, faculty are ready to begin!
Proposal Submission
SP Review
Write Proposal
Contact Sponsor
Determine Fund Priorities
Find Sponsor
Document Need
expected to
Identify Idea
An Award Is Made!
• 5 Criteria to Define:
– Must provide support for broadly defined activities, such as
professorships, scholarships, building projects, fellowships,
research and instructional programs. The donor may restrict the
use of funds to a specific program area or purpose.
– No detailed technical or fiscal reports are required as a condition of
the gift.
– All patents, copyrights and other intellectual property rights that
result from activities supported by the gift are not claimed by the
– The gift contains no restrictive provisions, such as delays or
advance notice concerning publication or dissemination of data and
information derived from activities supported by the gift.
– The gift is irrevocable by the donor.
• Must meet all 5 criteria
• Administered in Fund 233
Revenue Producing Activities (aka Fees for Services)
• In general, sales of goods or services.
– Examples:
• Copy centers
• Registration fees for conferences
• Routine testing
• Goods/services sold at a fixed rate.
– Rate determined by incorporating all direct and indirect costs
associated with providing goods/services.
• Most revenues of this type are handled in fund 136.
Grants vs. Contracts
• Grants
• Contracts
– Project conceived by
– PI defines details
and retains scientific
– Usually fundamental
research or
institutional research
and training
– Project conceived by
– Agency procures service
– Agency exercises
direction or control
– Agency closely monitors
– Usually developmental
research rather than
• Cooperative Agreements
Similar to Contracts, but typically conceived jointly.
Post-Award Process
• Receive notice of funding/award
• Award negotiations with sponsor (as needed)
– RSP alerts PI to any award restrictions
– “Contracts” require written approval from PI and Dean
• Awards accepted by RSP when the following are in place:
– Mandatory cost-sharing
– Assurance/Clearances
– Investigator financial disclosure
Post-Award (cont’d.)
• Establish project(s)
• Monitor expenditures and cost-sharing
• Award transfers (as needed)
• Financial reports (as needed)
• Transfer of funds from agency
• Award close-out
• Final financial and technical reports
Rules and Regulations
• Grant/Contract terms and conditions
• Sponsor’s general terms and conditions
• Office of Management and Budget Circulars (e.g. OMB A-21,
A-110, A-133)
• Code of Federal Regulations
• Federal Acquisition Regulations (FARs)
• State of Wisconsin statutes, policies, and
A-21: Cost Principles for Educational Institutions
• Establishes principles for determining costs
applicable to grants, contracts, and other agreements
with educational institutions.
• Designed to provide that the Federal Government
bear its fair share of total costs.
• Guides indirect cost (facilities and administration)
rates and time and effort reporting.
• Somewhat open to interpretation.
Can I Pay Off of My Grant?
Cost must be:
treated consistently
conform to any specific guidance set forth
in A-21
Does the cost incurred reflect an action
that a “prudent person” would have
taken under the circumstances
prevailing at the time?
• A cost is allocable to a sponsored
agreement or F&A rate if it is shown that
the cost benefits the agreement or the
operations of the institution through
reasonable methods
• Must conform to any limitations or exclusions
set forth in the cost principles or the
sponsored agreement.
Would you want to see it on the front page
of the Wisconsin State Journal?
Post-Award Grant Management
Please turn to Professor Smith
Questions in your packet
OMB Circular A-110
• Purpose - This Circular sets forth the standards for
obtaining consistency and uniformity among
Federal agencies in the administration of grants to
and agreements with institutions of higher
education, hospitals and other non-profit
• Think of it as the “instruction manual” or “cookbook”
for the Federal agencies.
Audits required by OMB Circular A-133
• States and local governments and non-profit
organizations (including colleges and
universities) that receive $500,000 or more in
federal funds required to have organizationwide audit.
A-133 Audit includes:
Financial Statements
Internal Controls
Review for Compliance
• Allowable costs and activities
• Cash management issues
• Effort reporting
• Cost-sharing requirements
• Financial and technical reporting
What if Something Goes Wrong?
• PI leaves/dies
• PI submits proposal on own
• Big-time “misappropriated funds”
Avoid these common mistakes:
• If the PI is expecting cost sharing from a
source on campus (or otherwise) check to
make sure it is possible! Cost sharing is
auditable and must be documented.
• If the project will require human subjects,
animal care, biological safety, etc.
clearances, work ahead! Committee
meetings are sometimes not as frequent as
the PI wishes.
• Cost/Benefit - does it cost more to do the
project than you are receiving from the
What’s New in Post-Award?
• New Grants Management Systems
– SFS modules for Grants (including budgeting), Projects,
A/R, Billing
– UW-built bolt-ons: WISPR and Cost Share
– New WISDM views for project financial data.
• ECRT: New Effort Reporting System
• Business Services migration from legacy systems
(A/P, PO, etc.)
• Increased External Audits (14 and counting)
Meet Professor Grey
Meet Professor Grey (continued)
Prof. Grey has been with the University for thirty-four years.
He has been scaling back his extensive research operations in recent
years, but plans on continuing research activity for the foreseeable
Prof. Grey and the previous research administrator worked very well
together for many years. She would frequently complete tasks and
sign paperwork for him—often without him having to ask for
Typical quotes:
“Why are you asking me to do this?
“In my thirty-plus years, I never had to do this before.”
“Where does it say that I have to do this?”
The Scenario
• Prof. Grey comes to your office with a copy of an email
requesting that he certify his effort using the University’s
new effort reporting system.
• Prof. Grey hands you the email and says:
– “Here; you need to take care of this for me today.”
• What do you do?
Topics for Discussion
• Roles and Responsibilities
• Effort Reporting
• Cost Sharing
•I’m doing research at 2 universities but
I only want to pay indirect once on my
NSF grant.
•But I can’t get my budget in early
because my research is so cutting
edge. How late can I walk it through?
(How is your luck?)
•I have two federal grants for two
separate projects but I keep them
completely separate (except for the fact
that I only have one lab).
Professor Black is in Political Science. He goes to a large
conference in his field and happens to sit at lunch next to
a Program Officer from XYZ Foundation. Professor Black
takes the opportunity to tell Ms. P.O. about a great project
he has been thinking about for some time. Being a
dynamic and interesting speaker (like all professors), he
soon has Ms. P.O. quite excited about his project idea.
She tells him to send her a 2-page prospectus with an
estimated budget next week after the conference ends.
Professor Black cannot believe his good fortune. He
rushes back to his office at the University of Uh-Oh that
weekend and types up his ideas, dropping them in the
mail on Monday morning. He has included a one-line
budget of $50,000, which will pay for the survey
instrument, mailing, a student to help him, and 2 months
of summer salary.
Professor White submits a last-minute proposal to
you that must be out the door within the hour to
meet the deadline. As you look frantically at his
budget, you notice that he has included a huge
amount of his own cost-shared time. You call
Professor White and ask if he really is going to
spend 100% of his time for 3 months for the next 3
summers on this project. He says, laughing, “Oh,
of course not. You know, you just put that stuff in
to make it look good.”
What do you do?
You have helped Professor Tan with her budget (17 times) for her
language center and her proposal was federally funded. You have
gratefully passed the folder on to post-award with the hope that
you never see Professor Tan again.
Several months later, post-award shows you a requisition for
$5000 in t-shirts. It is a confirming requisition (the t-shirts have
already been ordered) and you are quite sure that those t-shirts
were not in the budget to begin with. When post-award calls
Professor Tan, she has said that the t-shirts contain the language
center’s web address to advertise the center, and she has already
received the t-shirts and given them all away at a conference last
What do you do?
What do you do Part I:
The Medical School has a trainee who does not speak
English well. The Program Director makes a case to you
that paying for this student to take English diction
lessons will enhance his ability to see patients and is
therefore allowable as a trainee cost.
What do you do Part II:
The Program Director then produces a letter from the
Project Director at NIH stating that this is a reasonable
trainee cost and is allowable.
URLs to Bookmark
Medical School Research
URLs to Bookmark
L&S Research Services
Engineering Financial Services
Contact Us
• Diane Barrett
– [email protected]
• Bob Andresen
– [email protected]