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Research Contracts, Agreements & Risk Management Dynamics: Sharing diverse experiences Dr. Marlies Rise (Director, Office of Research Services, Memorial.

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Presentation on theme: "Research Contracts, Agreements & Risk Management Dynamics: Sharing diverse experiences Dr. Marlies Rise (Director, Office of Research Services, Memorial."— Presentation transcript:

1 Research Contracts, Agreements & Risk Management Dynamics: Sharing diverse experiences Dr. Marlies Rise (Director, Office of Research Services, Memorial University)

2 Office of Research Services The Office of Research Services (ORS) supports the efforts of the research community at Memorial University to secure external funding for research and the training of graduate students in compliance with the scholarly, ethical and administrative standards of our research sponsors (e.g. the Tri-Councils).

3 Funding by Sector – Grants and Contracts

4 Services Provided by ORS Institutional signature for applications, contracts and agreements Grant applications: reviews, submission Contracts/Agreements: Review and negotiate terms of research contracts and agreements; See: Authorization to Financial and Administrative Services to establish research accounts; tracking clearances (Animal Care, Ethics, etc.) Administration of internally-funded grant programs; application for institutional grants to support internal programs Liaison with Tri-Council (CIHR, NSERC, SSHRC) and other research funding organizations and agencies (>500 programs/200 agencies annually); accountability and regulatory requirements Workshops and faculty/staff orientations Capturing and reporting of information on the Memorials research effort Developing new research/strategic initiatives in consultation with the Office of the Vice-President Research and academic units Information services, e.g.: ORS Web Site; Funding opportunities/deadlines; Agency guidelines

5 Contract Administration Policy Purpose: To define the authority for the oversight of contract administration, the general parameters under which a University contract might be created, the roles and responsibilities associated with contract administration, and the positions that are required to review and sign contracts on behalf of the University.

6 Contract Administration Policy Contracts defined as any agreement which creates an obligation upon or affects the rights of the University, the provisions of which are legally binding. Schedule of Review and Signing Authority for Contractual Obligations

7 Pre-conditions The contract is in the best interests of the University and accords with the Universitys Mission and Strategic Plan. The contract has been reviewed from both a financial and a resources (including but not limited to space considerations) perspective. The contract is operationally feasible and the terms of the contract are financially reasonable to the University. The contract is in accordance with any legislative or regulatory requirements; policies, guidelines, collective agreements or other obligations of the University. Appropriate consultation has occurred with University administrative and/or academic units which have an interest in the contract. Provision has been made for adequate indemnity, insurance and risk management plans, and other appropriate protections.

8 Types of Research Contracts Research Contracts or Contract for Research Services Clinical Trial Agreements Confidential Disclosure Agreements Data Transfer/Sharing Agreements Materials Transfer Agreements Collaborative Research Agreements MOUs Intellectual Property Agreements Subcontracts Contract Amendments Contribution Agreements Contract Participant Agreements Post-award agreements Transfer Agreements Etc…

9 Some Key Considerations Student Involvement Academic progression Copyright and moral right in thesis Provisions for any researchers Publication Confidentiality Moral rights Rights for use of results/outcomes (especially for academic, research and educational purposes) Institutional liabilities Disclaimer – project of an experimental and exploratory nature Non-cancellable commitments Indemnities, limits of financial liabilities Survivability

10 Research Grants vs. Contracts Characteristics of GrantsCharacteristics of Contracts No direct or indirect remuneration to the principal investigator or co-investigators; Payment to the university is generally made in advance of expenditures; No specific transfer of results to the grantor; however a final report stating the results of the research may be submitted to the grantor; Normally no terms re: Intellectual Property sharing, assignment or licensing; Research objectives often broad (discovery); Normally no limitations on publication (e.g. results do not require Sponsor pre-review or time delay); Often no terms re: proprietary/confidential data of the Sponsor; The research/budget may be changed by the lead Investigator without notice; and Ownership of equipment purchased for project becomes the possession of the University. May include provisions for recovery of indirect costs Often specifically/narrowly outlines the scope, nature and expected outcome(s) of the research; Indirect Costs of Contract Research policy applies (Memorial); Sets the timeframe for the activities; Defines the deliverables and when its components are to be completed; Often addresses ownership of intellectual property, patent rights and licensing arrangements; Provides for confidentiality of information supplied and created; Publication pre-review or time delays may be required; Establishes firm, detailed budgets and payment schedules; Establishes considerations for acceptance and/or termination of the work; Limits liability of participants; and Changes to the Agreement require consent of Sponsor and Institution.

11 Research Contract - Best Case Scenario Administrative (ORS) and academic unit are engaged at the proposal development stage Principal Investigator applies for any applicable clearances (start date normally does not precede clearance unless otherwise covered in the agreement) Proposal is submitted to sponsor through ORS – the budget has provisions for indirect cost recovery Contract is received by ORS, or the ORS is invited to provide terms and conditions (template agreement) - all University policies are accommodated in the finalized agreement Contract is signed by the sponsor Approvals of the PI, Head and/or Director/Dean are obtained for the finalized contract Contract is signed by appropriate authority and returned to sponsor Copy of contract is sent for research account establishment with request copied to PI, Head, Dean/Director and Admin.

12 Potential Causes for Delays Articles/issues that can create delays: Indirect Costs Intellectual Property Publication/Copyright/Moral right Confidentiality Indemnification Termination Governing Laws Force Majeure Insurance Steps to resolution: Consultation with Legal Council, Office of VPR, Academic Unit, Risk Management, ILO, Sponsor, School of Graduate Studies, etc.

13 Post Award - Memorial Financial and Administrative Services (FAS) FAS opens research accounts upon notification from ORS Amendments Amendments processed through ORS Academic Unit Responsible for post award project activities such as: Processing expenditures (usually authorized by PI) Hiring (Dept. Admin. and HR) where applicable Normally researchers are responsible for progress reporting and deliverables, and ensuring terms related to publication review, confidentiality, etc. are met

14 Risk Management Insurance Whats covered, whats not, whats nice to have in agreements to mitigate risks? Models of managing liabilities Who is responsible for managing the various risks? What happens when something goes wrong?

15 Contact Office of Research Services (ORS) Memorial University Bruneau Centre for Research and Innovation 2 nd Floor, Room Elizabeth Avenue St. Johns, NL A1C 5S7 Director/Associate Director:


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