POLICIES: INDIRECT COST RETURN
Indirect funds collected will be distributed 50% to General Fund, 25% to RSP, 10% to College, 5% to Unit, 10% to PI. Indirect funds will be redistributed on the first day of Fall classes in the fiscal year following the fiscal year they were collected. Indirect returns must be spent within the fiscal year they are received except by special permission in advance from RSP for specific purposes. If any College, Unit, or PI has a negative grant balance, this must be rectified before any indirect return can be received. A Unit is an official recognized academic or administrative entity (e.g. department or center). All projects must have an identified lead P.I. and it is the responsibility of that PI to discuss use and distribution of indirect returns with co-PIs.
Definition: Indirect Costs are those costs which, because they occur for common or joint purposes, are not readily assignable to any specific project. Examples of costs which fall into these categories are costs for utilities, maintenance, space, equipment use, accounting, purchasing, personnel services, research administration, and library services. For a more detailed list of the generally accepted indirect cost items, more information is available from the U.S. Office of Management and Budget Circular A-21.
Background: Most institutions have an indirect cost return policy and formula that directs indirects collected to the general fund to cover general expenses and to the entities responsible for generating and administering grants. SCSU does not have such a formula, and to date indirect costs have been directed, at a fixed rate, to personnel costs, administrative affairs, and the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs. The proposed formula brings SCSU into alignment with practices at peer institutions, and is based on discussions and input from the Applied Research Committee and comparisons with peer institutions.
Effect of Policy on RSP funding opportunities: Most Research and Sponsored Programs offices are not charged with discretionary distribution of internal funds. This new plan brings SCSU in closer alignment with successful strategies elsewhere.
The Indirect Return policy will replace the Principle Investigators Funds.
The New Initiative Funds will become the University Researchers Funds. The University Researchers Fund will provide up to $5,000 to individuals or groups seeking external funds of $25,000 or more for research, scholarly or creative activity. Applications from new P.I.’s are particularly encouraged. The amount of University Researchers Funds available will vary annually depending indirect cost revenues.