Chapter 9: Research Equipment
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    Chapter 9: Research Equipment

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    Article Summary

    Research equipment refers to the physical instruments or apparatus used primarily for research purposes. Research equipment may be purchased as a complete unit or fabricated from components at the University; in either event, research equipment is considered to be an asset owned by Duke University or an external sponsor. Therefore, the management of these assets is subject to the definitions, principles and controls identified in General Accounting Procedure 200.040, Plant & Equipment Definitions, General Principles and Controls.

    Investigators and organizational units have a responsibility for ensuring that the research equipment under their supervision is accounted for and optimally utilized. Investigators and organizational units are accountable to the University for appropriate management of research equipment under their supervision.

    9.1 Equipment Transfer Guidelines

    Research equipment transfers occur when an investigator will cease to have an employment relationship with Duke University and will transfer their research activities to another institution of higher education. Because research equipment is an asset owned by Duke University or an external sponsor, the transfer of these assets requires appropriate institutional reviews, coordination and approvals.

    Prior to an investigator leaving Duke University, the organizational unit has the responsibility to catalogue research equipment related to the investigator’s active projects to enable review and verification of the assets, their acquisition price and current value by Plant Accounting.

    For pieces of research equipment purchased with Duke University funds, the investigator should submit a request for transfer to their unit leadership. The request must be approved by unit leadership, the Provost or the Associate Dean Space Management and Research Resources in the School of Medicine.

    For pieces of research equipment purchased with restricted (externally-sponsored) funds, the Office of Post-Award Financial Management must review all transfer requests and will coordinate communication regarding the potential transfer with the external sponsor.

    If a sponsor has approved the transfer of grant or contract activities to another institution and has not explicitly denied a request to transfer the research equipment, Duke will presume the sponsoring agency expects the research equipment to transition with the investigator.

    For instances when an investigator requests research equipment to transition to an entity that is not an institution of higher education, the investigator and department should follow the procedures for disposing of surplus equipment.

    Further information on procedures relating to the transfer or disposition of research equipment may be found in the General Accounting Procedure 200.125, University, Medical Center and Government Surplus Property.

    Revised, 2022

    For further information, contact the Office of Post Award Financial Management.