Transferring Funds Between Co-investigators

Researchers often wish to share funding with co-investigators at other institutions. The specific procedures for transferring funding depend on whether an SFU researcher is the recipient or the sender of research funding. Collaborations among researchers from multiple institutions are common. The following outlines the process involved in transferring funds between institutions for use by co-investigators. These transfers are variously called sub-grants, sub-contracts or grant transfer agreements (GTAs).

The sponsor's terms and conditions or guidelines must permit the issuance of subgrants or subcontracts. The recipient of a subgrant must be either listed as a co-applicant on the application or on the Notice of Award and/or approved by the sponsor. 

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Some Canadian sponsors will not permit grant transfers outside of Canada. The amount of funds to be transferred and the recipient's name is in many cases listed in the application budget.

Due to all the steps and correspondence required between institutions and, potentially, sponsors, researchers should allow up to one month for subgrant transfers and up to three months for transferring funds to foreign institutions via contractual arrangements.

Principal investigators and co-investigators are responsible for finalizing the budget, and the principal investigator is responsible for notifying ORS to initiate the preparation of the sub-grant letters or sub-contract.

Funds will not be released unless there is enough money in the SFU account to cover the amount to be sent elsewhere.

For both incoming and outgoing sub-awards, the principal investigator named by the sponsor will be responsible for the non-financial reporting. The lead institution is responsible for financial reporting.

Subgrant Transfers from SFU

Steps to issue a subgrant:

The principal investigator completes, signs, and sends the Request to Subgrant to Co-PI Form, found below, to ORS (ors@sfu.ca) outlining the amount to be transferred, for what, and to whom. After clarification of any remaining information with the grant holder, ORS prepares a letter of agreement or contract between SFU and the recipient institution and sends this document to the research office of the recipient institution for signature.

The research office of the recipient institution signs the letter of agreement or contract verifying that the institution will administer funds according to the sponsor's terms and conditions and that funds will not be released until certification requirements are met (human ethics, animal use, biohazards). Upon receipt of this signed letter of agreement or contract, SFU transfers funds to the recipient institution.

SFU is accountable for all funds, including the subgrant. ORS requests financial reporting from the recipient institution as required by the sponsor.

Non-financial reporting remains the responsibility of the principal investigator.

Request to Subgrant to Co-PI Form

Subgrant Transfers to SFU  

Steps to receive a subgrant:

The principal investigator at the other institution contacts his/her research office to request a letter of agreement or contract between their institution and SFU.

The SFU grant recipient needs to complete an SFU Funding Application Signature Sheet and submit it to ORS for approval. ORS ensures that the SFU sub grant recipient is in agreement with the terms offered. ORS receives, reviews, and signs this letter of agreement or contract, verifying that ORS will administer the funds according to the terms and conditions of the sponsor, and that funds will not be released until certification requirements are met (human ethics, animal use, biohazards).