The Institutional Strategic Awards Team

SFU’s Institutional Strategic Awards (ISA) team focuses on pre-award development and post-award management of the largest and most complex grants, contracts, prizes and awards at Simon Fraser University (SFU). Among other staff, the ISA hosts a team of Research Project Managers who are available to provide SFU researchers with the support necessary to develop and implement their complex research and research-related projects.

How the ISA Fits in at SFU

How an ISA Research Project Manager Can Help You

The Research Project Manager (RPM) works directly with proponents (faculty, AVPR, Deans, grants facilitators, departmental managers, etc.) to develop project and funding plans, and ensures the successful implementation of these plans in adherence with funding requirements. The RPM assists project leaders in the administration of major research grants and contracts and assesses variances from the project plans, budgets, and schedules. The RPM works closely with a team of specialists (writers, financial analysts, and facilitators) to provide seamless service to researchers.

Examples of what an ISA Research Project Manager can do for your Research Project

  • Serve as the liaison between the researchers, the funding agencies, partnering institutions, administrative units, and SFU academic departments.
  • Facilitate communication and collaborative relationships across activities, researchers, collaborators, funding agencies, internal units and departments, and external stakeholders.
  • Assist with project launch, including coordination of account set-up, agreement execution, defining project leadership roles, and template preparation.
  • Develop management, schedule, and funding plans that provide project structure.
  • Coordinate the overall administration of the project.
  • Develop tools and processes to facilitate project goals and needs.
  • Coordinate reporting.
  • Recommend the allocation of funds and administer expenditures.
  • Ensure the project stays in scope, on schedule, and in budget.
  • Monitor expenditures to ensure that funds are spent as planned and within budget.
  • Develop performance measurement indicators and assess variances.
  • Identify risk and compliance issues and possible solutions.
  • Provide direction and advice throughout the project lifespan.
  • Troubleshoot problems so as to remove barriers to successful project completion.

Examples of what an ISA Research Project Manager does NOT do

  • Serve as the project sponsor; it is the role of the PI to lead the project.
  • Serve as a technical expert or provide reporting on technical subject matter.
  • Coordinate technical staff on the project.
  • Assist in performing research.
  • Replace the role of the project accountant, departmental grants facilitators, or departmental managers.
  • Write grants.
  • Provide clerical support.