Notification, Review and Acceptance of the Award

1. Notification of the Award

If the Sponsor selects the proposal for award, it sends the University a notification of grant, contract or cooperative agreement. The Office of Research Services (ORS) reviews and negotiates the award agreement to ensure that the terms regarding report submission dates, publications, indemnification, intellectual property, termination, dispute resolution, and governing law are compliant with University’s policy. After determining that the award is acceptable, the Office of Research Services (ORS) signs in behalf of the University. For Official Institution Business Officers visit here

The Office of Research Services (ORS) is authorized to negotiate and accept awards on behalf of Georgetown University.  ORS has responsibility for reviewing the terms and conditions of all sponsored research agreements and will work with the Principal Investigator (PI), General Counsel’s Office, Office of Technology and Commercialization and the Tax Department to negotiate any necessary changes. 

2. Review and Negotiation of the Award

All externally funded awards must be routed to relevant Grants and Contracts Administrator who reviews the awards for compliance with University policy. ORS will review the award budget and compare it to the proposed budget. Significant differences between the two budgets will be brought to the attention of the Principal Investigator. If budget changes are substantial, it is customary to revise the proposed statement of work to correspond to the budget changes.

For Award Notification and Negotiation assistance, please contact the team ORS via  e-mail address for any questions.

NSF Awards  and all incoming sub-agreements with NSF funding only.  All other incoming sub-agreements will be distributed according to the sponsor type 

Ruel Hector Tiongson

Senior Grants and Contracts Administrator

All Corporate Agreements and All Non-Profit & Foundations that are not MSSP or Law Center

Rocio Marino-Crumley

Manager Grants & Contracts Team

All International, Local & State Agreements and All MSPP & Law Center Non-Profit and Foundation Agreements

Meghan Graves

Grants and Contracts Administrator

All Federal Awards (except NSF), Universities and the following Foundations: Gates Foundation, Andrew Mellon, BSF Anonymous, Kresge Foundation, Carnegie Corporation, and Walton Family Foundation

Blair Ribeiro

Senior Grants and Contracts Administrator

3. Legal Considerations

When reviewing and negotiating an award is crucial to take into account these legal considerations.

4. Setting Up the Award

Office of Research Services (ORS) is the point of entry for all incoming awards and will negotiate the terms of the award as needed. Once a grant has been awarded and ORS has negotiated the terms and conditions of the award with the sponsor, the PI, in conjunction with both departmental and grant administrator, is responsible for managing the award. This management must follow the rules and regulations set forth in federal guidance as well as institutional policies and procedures published by Georgetown University.

Office of Research Services ORS sets up the new award/amendment in GMS and then it gets routed to SPFO for review and approval. After the new award/amendment is approved by SPFO, the update process is completed and the changes are reflected on GMS. For new awards, the account can be charged only after the whole process is complete (not before SPFO approves). A unique AWD and GR accounts are created in the University’s financial system GMS, and the PI and other relevant campus individuals are notified of the account numbers. The PI may then begin to work on the research project.

5. Pre-Award Spending and Advance (At-Risk) Accounts

Advance (At-Risk) Accounts

Pre-award spending occurs on an award prior to receiving the official notice from the sponsor. Though authorized by the sponsor, the University bears all the risk and the award may not materialize; therefore, it is important to assess such risks before engaging in spending. 

Advance Accounts may be appropriate in situations where the PI wants to begin work on the project while the terms of the award are in negotiation. Any charges incurred are the department’s responsibility if agreement on acceptable terms cannot be reached. It is possible to request authorization for pre-award spending on grants and cooperative agreements with most federal agencies and to charge award-related expenses up to 90 days prior to the award start date.

Establishing an account “at risk” account allows charges to be tracked properly, prevents the accumulation of charges in unrelated “holding” accounts while waiting for official sponsor authorization, and reduces the likelihood of late cost transfers. All “at risk” accounts should be monitored with special care.

As of March 16, 2021, the Provost’s Finance Office has authorized the use of At-Risk accounts in accordance with the University’s Advance Account policy FA-179-14.  This would include using advance accounts for multi-year grants that are waiting for their annual authorization and  for new grants waiting for their notice of award. To set up an At-Risk account, complete the at-risk account form and route to the appropriate offices for signature before sending the completed form for ORS approval.

6. Useful links

Georgetown University – Governance Documents

Georgetown University – Charter

Georgetown University – Tax Documents

Payments Policies, Procedures, Guides & Forms