Related Policy: The purpose of this document is to provide clarification and supporting information with respect to the Institutional Costs of Research policy.
Determination of Institutional Costs Level
For all Research funding administered at the university, Institutional Costs must be calculated at the time of proposal development based on the Institutional Costs of Research policy. A separate line item should be included in the budget to clearly indicate the rate and amount of Institutional Costs for the Research project.
The Institutional Cost of Research Recovery Rate is 25%, except for human clinical trials. The rate is a standard flat rate and is applied to all Direct Costs of Research, including stipends. In the case of human Clinical Trial Agreements, the Institutional Cost Recovery Rate is 30%. Additional detail is provided related to the following situations:
1.0 Research Sponsored by:
There are no Institutional Costs assessed on
- Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC);
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC);
- Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR);
- Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI);
- Tri-Agency Institutional Programs Secretariat (TIPS);
- Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE)-funded networks;
- Cash contributions from partner organizations that are recognized as required cost-sharing funds, necessary for making a Tri-Agency award; partner organization cash contributions beyond this shall be subject to the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate.
- Funding that originates from one of the sources listed above that is transferred to the university from another institution.
Indirect cost payments through the Research Support Fund are provided by the federal government to the institution on an annual basis, based on a formula directly related to the total amount of annual grant funding received from the Tri-Agencies.
1.2 Industry and General Funding Sources
An Institutional Costs Recovery Rate of 25% should be included in all applications for funding not described above, as long as such a charge is not prohibited within the published guidelines of the funder. If the program guidelines do not address the aspect of Institutional Costs, the 25% rate should be included at the application stage.
1.3 United States and other Foreign Entities
Research funding received from non-Canadian government agencies or non-Canadian industrial agencies should be assessed an Institutional Costs Recovery Rate of 25%. If the rate from these agencies is higher than 25%, then the agency rate will be applied.
1.4 University of Saskatchewan Internal Research Funding Support
Funding received from internal departments of the University of Saskatchewan or through internally administered programs is exempt from the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate. Examples include faculty start-up funds, publication and visiting lecturer awards, etc.
1.5 Individual Contributions
Funding for Research Agreements received through contributions from individuals will be subject to the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate.
1.6 Agencies Providing Funding for Infrastructure
The Institutional Costs Recovery Rate is not applied to funding support for infrastructure (buildings and major equipment).2.0 Multi-Year Budgets
For those projects that are multi-year in nature and for which funding is awarded, the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate defined by the current policy will apply to the approved budgeted funding. Should there be an extension of funding beyond the initial term of the award, (e.g. expected renewal, conditional extensions, etc.), these Budgets will include the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate applicable at the time of confirmation.
3.0 Partially Funded Projects
In many instances, a sponsor will not agree to fund a proposed Budget in full (which includes an Institutional Costs Recovery Rate line item according to university policy). In such cases, the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate will apply only to the funding actually received towards the Direct Costs of Research.
4.0 Technical Service Agreements
For technical service agreements, the Institutional Cost Recovery Rate charge of 25% is to be included on all costs. These agreements are between the university and one or more external contracting agencies, to provide for the delivery of services in which the investigator and agency often jointly define the scope of the work. The activity typically involves data generation and minimal investigator interpretation, with results and reports deliverable at defines dates.
5.0 Administration of Third Party Funding Support
Where the sponsor provides support indirectly through an administrative party or council body, the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate is applied to the Direct Costs of the Research carried out by the university. This includes institutes and centres that manage external funding who then provide funding for Research projects administered at the University of Saskatchewan.
6.0 Institutional Costs at Rates Higher than Stated in Policy
Where a sponsor allows for Institutional Costs at rates that exceed the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate as stated in the policy, it is acceptable to assess Institutional Costs in a Budget at a rate that exceeds that indicated in the Institutional Costs of Research policy.
7.0 Institutional Costs at Rates Lower than Stated in Policy
Where a sponsor allows for Institutional Costs at rates that is less than the Institutional Costs Recovery Rate as stated in the policy, it is acceptable to assess Institutional Costs in a Budget at that reduced rate on the condition that the rate paid by the sponsor is their official, posted rate which applies to all research funding provided by them to universities.
Recovery and distribution of institutional costs
All Institutional Costs (100%) recovered will be directed to the revenue centres (colleges/schools/centres) in which the principal investigator holds their primary appointment. The distribution of the recovery of the Institutional Costs can be distributed to other colleges/schools/centres by approval of the principal investigator and their dean/director. If research is being conducted in another unit, or collaborative research is conducted in two or more units, distribution of Institutional Costs must be negotiated by unit heads at the time the funding terms are finalized and accepted.
Any exemptions or reductions require the approval of the respective dean or director of the unit in receipt of Institutional Costs and in which the research is being carried out. With the exemption, the college/school/centre recognizes that it is still responsible for the Institutional Costs of Research associated with activities in their area.
Institutional Costs will be billed to the sponsoring agency in lump sums where allowed under the defined payment terms of the Agreement. In situations where the sponsor payments are made based on reimbursements, the Institutional Costs will be charged to the fund when the budgeted expenses are incurred, and billed according to the terms of the Agreement.
The university will allocate Institutional Costs recovered on Research Agreements to a specific fund administered by the Dean or Director tracked to the academic home of the principal investigator. If research is being conducted in another unit, or collaborative research is conducted in two or more units, distribution of Institutional Costs must be negotiated by unit heads at the time the funding terms were finalized and accepted.
At the time of fund authorization, the Research Services and Ethics Office will then provide the needed information to Financial Services Division for the set up of the agreed-to distribution of the recovered Institutional Costs.