The Offices of Research Support and Office of Research Administration

The Office of Research Support (for campus units) and the Office of Research Administration (for the School of Medicine and School of Nursing) are responsible for supporting investigators and financial administrators with managing their externally sponsored research projects. More specifically, they are responsible for ensuring that sponsored projects are carried on in compliance with university policies and federal and local regulations. Because awards are made to the university on behalf of an investigator, the university is ultimately responsible for proper management of a project and a sponsor’s funds. All proposals, regardless of the source of funding or the type of project (research, instructional, conference, travel, training, etc.), must be reviewed and approved by these offices prior to submission to a sponsor. All awards must be reviewed and negotiated by these offices prior to acceptance.

  1. In reviewing proposals, ORS and ORA are responsible for:

    1. Checking proposal budgets for accuracy, correct rates, and allowability of items proposed.

    2. Checking proposals and Duke Proposal Approval Form (DPAF) to ensure that non-central approvals, appropriate clearances (such as Corporate and Foundation Relations and the Office of Corporate and Venture Development) and required compliance approvals (such as human subjects, laboratory animals, or biohazardous materials) have been obtained for the project.

    3. Insuring proposed cost-sharing is required, approved and properly documented.

    4. Insuring that all required documentation for subcontractors is complete prior to submission of the proposal.

    5. Providing institutional approval signatures for proposals for submission to the proposed sponsor.

    6. Communicating with the project’s designated administrator on issues discovered in the review.

  2. When a sponsor decides to make an award to the University, ORS and ORA are responsible for:

    1. Approving the revised budget (if needed).

    2. Reviewing the terms of the grant or contract.

    3. Negotiating any terms that are unacceptable to the university.

    4. Processing/depositing awards in a timely manner and notifying department administrators that an award has been received.

    5. Communicating with the project’s PI or designated administrator on issues related to the award.

  3. Once an award is made, ORS and ORA are responsible for certain aspects of post-award administration and compliance oversight in tandem with the Office of Sponsored Programs. They are responsible for:

    1. Preparing subcontracts and negotiating terms with the subcontractors.

    2. Approving and requesting all changes to the agreements between Duke and sponsors.

    3. Approving consultancies or outside services contracts and requests for local telephone services.

    4. Acting as a liaison between sponsors and investigators during a project to resolve issues.

    5. Communicating with the project’s designated administrator on issues.

  4. ORS and ORA can assist PIs and Grant Managers in the resolution of non-fraudulent financial issues by interpreting grant terms and conditions, University policy and Federal and State regulations.