An award to the University from a sponsoring organization serves as a legal document which obligates the University to a financial and/or contractual commitment. An award may be in the form of a letter issued by an authorized agent of the sponsoring organization or it may consist of a complete contractual document. In other cases acceptance by the University and subsequently by the sponsoring organization is required before the award is in force. In other cases, no formal acceptance is required.
The OSRP will consult with a P.I. if the award differs from the submitted proposal, so that the award may be accepted, modified, or rejected. No charges may be incurred against a sponsored project until such time as the OSRP has received and processed an original award notification from the sponsor, and an account number has been issued to the P.I.
On some occasions, receipt of the actual award documents authorizing expenditures for a project may be delayed. If a delay will seriously impede the course of the project, it is possible to obtain permission to initiate expenditures for a short time in advance of actual receipt by the University of an award document. P.I.’s should contact their department chairman and OSRP to discuss options. In some cases, an award may be issued by the organization after a series of negotiations which may involve revisions to the scope of the project and/or to the proposed budget. The OSRP will assist the P.I. and University’s authorized agent to negotiate any required revisions. Faculty researchers (P.I.s) are reminded that the acceptance of a revised scope of work or budget is a judgment that only they can make; it is not a judgment or condition that may be unilaterally imposed by the granting organization. If the organization requires the submission of a revised work plan or budget, this must be prepared by the P.I. and submitted to the OSRP for institutional endorsement and for forwarding to the sponsoring organization. Upon receipt of an official award, the P.I. will receive a summary statement which contains the account number and any special terms and conditions of award.