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Principal Investigator

The Principal Investigator is the primary individual in charge of a research grant, cooperative agreement, training or public service project, contract, or other sponsored project.

The Principal Investigator reports to a unit head (or other designated official).


PROPOSAL PREPARATION AND SUBMISSION

General

The Principal Investigator confirms that the entire proposal meets requirements outlined in the Request for Applications, Request for Proposals, or other application instructions. Requirement examples include dollar limits, page limitations, font type and size, deadlines, and mailing addresses. The Principal Investigator may delegate this responsibility to staff members.

The Principal Investigator updates her or his vitae, title, and other personal information in the University's Expertise Database and on the Peoplesoft system. The Principal Investigator may delegate this responsibility to staff members.

Technical Proposal

The Principal Investigator prepares the technical proposal and may collaborate with others in its preparation.

The Principal Investigator identifies the need for subcontracts.

If on- or off-campus space in addition to that already assigned to the Principal Investigator is needed, the Principal Investigator identifies the need and requests it from her or his Unit Head.

  • if the on-campus space needs modifications or renovations, the Principal Investigator requests these changes this from her or his unit head.

  • if the off-campus space is a laboratory or clinic, the Principal Investigator notifies the DEHS, as well as her or his unit head.

Proposal Budget

The Principal Investigator prepares or directly supervises the preparation of the categorized budget and its justification.

The Principal Investigator selects the appropriate facilities and administrative rate from the negotiated rates.

The Principal Investigator obtains a facilities and administrative cost waiver, if appropriate;

The Principal Investigator requests matching funds or identifies in-kind contributions.

The Principal Investigator proposes cost sharing through contributed effort.

The Principal Investigator identifies all available financial resources in direct support of this or other research endeavors (other support).

The Principal Investigator identifies anticipated program income.

Regulatory Requirements

The Principal Investigator prepares the appropriate forms from the Institutional Review Board (IRB), the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) and/or the Department of Environmental Health and Safety (DEHS). if the proposal involves:

  • human subjects;
  • live animals as subjects;
  • recombinant DNA, infectious agents, narcotics or biological toxins;
  • human blood or body fluids;
  • radioactive materials and/or ionizing or nonionizing radiation-producing equipment; or
  • hazardous materials in an off-campus space,

If necessary, the Principal Investigator obtains additional collegiate or departmental approvals, for example Cancer Protocol Review and General Clinical Research Center Review.

If a potentially significant conflict of interest situation exists, the Principal Investigator prepares a Disclosure Form.

Proposal Routing Form

The Principal Investigator prepares, or directly supervises the preparation of, the Proposal Routing Form.

If other departments and colleges are involved, the Principal Investigator provides this information, and ensures they are included in the approval routing chain.

The Principal Investigator signs the Proposal Routing Form. This responsibility cannot be delegated and the signature certifies that each item on the form is filled-out completely and accurately.


ACCEPTANCE OF THE AWARD

Preaward

The Principal Investigator obtains advance or preaward accounts, if necessary.

Negotiations with Sponsor

The Principal Investigator negotiates and approves the project scope.

The Principal Investigator in collaboration with Sponsored Projects Administration, modifies the project budget in line with the award budget provided by the sponsor.

The Principal Investigator notifies the unit head and Sponsored Projects Administration about the changes in project scope and budget.

The Principal Investigator notifies the appropriate regulatory office if changes to project scope will affect approved protocols.

Acceptance of Award

The Principal Investigator reviews and approves the Notice of Grant Award (NOGA), which contains the terms and conditions of the award.

The Principal Investigator obtains approvals if cost sharing becomes necessary.


CONDUCT AND MANAGEMENT OF THE PROJECT

General

Principal investigators must attend training in the Responsible Conduct of Research.

Individual faculty - as principal investigators, research directors, and mentors - encourage their students and other research personnel to participate in educational programs on the responsible conduct of research.

Develop and Implement a Small Business Plan

The Principal Investigator works with Sponsored Projects Administration and the departmental administrator to develop a small business contracting plan.

The Principal Investigator directs purchases that are consistent with the project budget and the Small Business Plan.

The Principal Investigator ensures that Small Business Plan purchases are made and the Plan is accomplished.

The Principal Investigator interacts with Sponsored Project Administration staff regarding progress toward achievement of Small Business Plan goals and reviews periodic reports about goals.

The Principal Investigator provides an explanation when small business plan goals are not achieved.

Conduct of the Research

The Principal Investigator is responsible for all actions required to manage and complete the scientific and programmatic aspects of the sponsored project.

The Principal Investigator inititates programmatic changes to the project.

The Principal Investigator initiates the hiring or assignment process and approves the selection or appointment of individuals to the project.

The Principal Investigator ensures the integrity and safeguarding of notebooks and scientific data.

The Principal Investigator ensures the completion, accuracy and timeliness of interim programmatic (technical) reports.

The Principal Investigator initiates and approves subcontract agreements prepared by Sponsored Projects Administration.

The Principal Investigator ensures the quality, timeliness, and programmatic (technical) performance of subcontracts.

If using biological materials from another source, the Principal Investigator initiates a materials transfer agreement.

Budget Management

The Principal Investigator initiates purchases.

At the time expenditures are requested, the Principal Investigator determines the allowability and reasonableness of all expenditures, approves them, and provides scientific justification for the transaction.

The Principal Investigator initiates the process of documenting cost sharing and/or matching.

The Principal Investigator initiates requests for rebudgeting as the sponsor requires.

The Principal Investigator initiates cost transfer requests.

The Principal Investigator identifies and proposes a resolution of any overdraft.

The Principal Investigator approves payments of subcontractor invoices.

The Principal Investigator uses monthly and daily reports for financial monitoring and identifies and resolves errors on the account in a timely manner.

The Principal Investigator reviews interim invoice and financial reports provided by Sponsored Financial Reporting.

If appropriate at budget period end, the Principal Investigator requests that remaining balances be carried forward .

Program Income

The Principal Investigator:

  • identifies all program income;
  • initiates the processes and proposes the allocation of program income;
  • monitors receipt of program income;
  • reviews program income reported to the sponsor by Sponsored Financial Reporting.

Effort Reporting

Ensure the appropriateness and accuracy of all effort expended on the sponsored project and compliance with Effort Policy. Expend effort on project. Certify direct-charged and committed cost-shared effort up to the effort level committed. On federal projects, obtain prior approval if absent for more than three consecutive months, or effort is reduced more than 25% from the budgeted awarded plan.

Inventions

The Principal Investigator:

  • adheres to the principles and policies outlined in the Intellectual Property Policy and the Conflict of Interest Policy.
  • initiates the disclosure process and completes the Invention Disclosure Form in order to notify Patents & Marketing Technology and the unit head;

  • assists in preparing patent applications;

  • initiates the processing of copyrights; and

  • assists in processing licensing agreements.

Project Closure

The Principal Investigator prepares the final programmatic (technical) narrative report.

The Principal Investigator reviews final invoices and financial reports provided by Sponsored Financial Reporting.

The Principal Investigators work with their academic business unit to resolve overdraft and unallowable charge issues.

The Principal Investigator works with the unit administrators and Sponsored Financial Reporting to provide information or advice to resolve any invoicing or reporting problems.

The Principal Investigator provides information on other closing reports, such as for patents and on equipment.

The Principal Investigator retains the scientific data.

Regulatory Compliance

If a potentially significant conflict of interest situation exists, the Principal Investigator prepares a Disclosure Form in order to notify her or his Unit Head.

The Principal Investigator adheres to research subjects protocols and policies, and notifies the appropriate office if changes are made to protocols;

The Principal Investigator meets continuing protocol review requirements and assists with inspections.

The Principal Investigator adheres to chemical, biological, physical and radiation safety requirements, and notifies the appropriate office if accidents occur;

The Principal Investigator adheres to the policies and procedures for using legend and investigational new drugs for clinical research.

VPR

This document was updated on 3/26/04.
Direct comments or suggestions to sewel005@tc.umn.edu.

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