Chapter 8: Financial and Project Management
    • Dark
    • PDF

    Chapter 8: Financial and Project Management

    • Dark
    • PDF

    Article Summary

    Duke University is committed to excellence in research, including the efficient and compliant management of externally-sponsored research activities. The following policies provide University policies and expectations for the development and submission of a proposal for external funding; along with the financial and award management of research activities during the life of the award.

    Further information on the procedures and tasks of pre- and post-award research activities are detailed within myRESEARCHpath and the Duke University General Accounting Procedures (GAPs).

    8.1 Develop and Submit Proposals

    8.1.1 Internal Submission for External Funding Applications

    I. Internal Submission Deadlines at Duke University

    As the applicant organization, Duke University is responsible for reviewing all applications seeking external funding (i.e., grants, contracts, cooperative agreements) to ensure they are true, complete, and accurate submissions and to verify compliance with institutional and sponsor policies and guidelines. To ensure adequate time and resources to administer these reviews, the University may set and enforce internal submission deadlines by which applications must be received in final form by authorized organizational representatives (AOR), which are the Office of Research Administration (ORA) and the Office for Research Contracts (ORC) for applications from the Schools of Medicine and Nursing, and the Office of Research Support (ORS) for the Campus schools.

    In certain rare circumstances, the University may allow Principal Investigators (PIs) to seek a waiver, allowing for late submission of an application to ORA, ORC, or ORS. These waivers will be considered in such circumstances as instances of illness, family leave, or short notice of the funding opportunity or sponsor submission deadline. Further information on requesting a late submission waiver can be found on myRESEARCHpath.

    II. Internal Review

    To ensure applications for external funding receive the necessary certifications and make accurate representations of the University’s capabilities, an AOR in ORA, ORC, or ORS must review the complete, final application package as intended to be submitted to the sponsor. This includes any administrative, scientific, and budgetary materials related to the application submission. Any changes made to the final application package must be approved by the appropriate pre-award office.

    III. Failure to adhere to internal submission expectations

    If applications do not receive institutional clearances and necessary approvals as outlined in University guidance on myRESEARCHpath, the University may withhold submission of the application to the external sponsor or refuse the award at the time of award notification.

    Failure to comply with the policies as stated may result in disciplinary action, consistent with University policy.

    Effective, October 1, 2021

    8.2 Financial Management & Costing

    8.2.1 Cost Sharing

    Cost sharing is the financial and non-financial support contributed by the University or a third-party to a sponsored project to complete a project’s statement of work. Only cost sharing that is necessary and reasonable for accomplishment of project or program objectives, and is required by the sponsor as a condition of the award, should be included in applications for external funding. Cost sharing that is quantified, whether provided by the University or a third-party, becomes a condition of the award and is subject to audit.

    All cost sharing requires institutional approval. Requests to cost share must be made by the Principal Investigator (PI) and approved by the appropriate school and management center leadership. When considering the cost share request, school and management center leadership should consider the relevance and importance of the proposed activities to other institutional priorities and the overall mission of the University.

    Cost sharing is subject to sponsor requirements, restrictions, and acceptance. Cost sharing commitments that appear anywhere in the application, including budget justifications, letters of support, and the scientific or technical sections of the proposal, must be met, tracked and reported in a consistent manner once an award is made to the University.

    Duke research personnel, including PIs, grant administrators, and Authorized Organizational Representatives (AORs), have a shared responsibility to review all proposal, award, and related documents to ensure awareness and appropriate approval of cost sharing commitments.

    For further information, consult General Accounting Procedure 200.140, Cost Sharing on Sponsored Projects.

    Revised, 2022

    8.2.2 Facilities and Administrative Costs

    Facilities & Administrative (F&A) costs are incurred for a common or joint purpose benefitting more than one program or function and therefore cannot be readily identified with a specific activity, such as an individual award. These costs are recovered on external funding by calculating and applying an F&A rate. The University’s F&A rate incorporates facilities costs, including maintenance and repairs, environmental health and safety, hazardous waste disposal, utilities, library resources, etc., and the administrative costs necessary to facilitate sponsored activities, such as procurement, billing, human resources, personnel and units providing support to investigators, etc.

    The University and the federal government negotiate F&A rates for various activities based on a periodic review. The University’s policy is to apply the appropriate federally approved rate to all externally funded projects to enable recovery of F&A costs or to manage the recovery of F&A according to a sponsor’s published F&A policy. Exceptions to the University’s policy are managed according to the procedure identified in General Accounting Procedure 200.330, Facilities and Administrative Costs on Sponsored Projects.

    Further information on F&A costs, including rate agreements, is available on myRESEARCHpath.