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Southern University System

Southern University Policies




Southern University subscribes to the viewpoint that interagency collaboration for the purpose of enhancing the body of available knowledge, achieving efficient knowledge and technology transfers, and fostering the attainment of mutually beneficial institutional goals, are fundamental to achieving the purposes for which academia exists. To that end, the University encourages individuals, groups, departments and colleges to seek and accept grants, contracts and sponsored research projects that offer the opportunity for collaboration, joint investigation, research and consortia relationships. In the case of centers and programs, assurance must be provided that the initiative falls within the goals of the institution and those set for the particular center or program. However, the expectation and availability of interagency collaboration alone should not form the basis for seeking grant, contract or sponsored research projects.

The following guidelines are presented to further clarify the parameters within which Southern University employees must operate when seeking and completing funded projects with external sponsors. Such parameters are deemed necessary to assure integrity in dealing with funding agencies; to insure that projects accepted for completion by the University are within the primary sphere of capability available within the University or System to adequately accomplish the results desired; and/or to protect the University's interests when it becomes necessary to subcontract with other individuals, outside agencies, etc., to complete a sponsored project.

These proposed guidelines are for fostering the utilization of available resources within the Southern University System for the work needed to complete contracts, grants and other sponsored projects prior to subcontracting with agencies, individuals or groups external to the University and/or System.


1. University bidders, seekers and receivers of grants, contracts and sponsored research projects must conduct an assessment and obtain assurance of the University/System's ability to provide personnel, space, equipment and other support needed to complete the work required on a sponsored project. More than one assessment may be required.

2. Project Directors/Principal Investigators must make every effort to fill personnel, skill, research, and other project support needs through collaboration, first between employees within the institution, then between employees at other campuses within the System before seeking approval to subcontract with an outside agency, group or individual.

3. When the completion of a sponsored project requires subcontracting any of the work to be accomplished to an entity outside of the Southern University System, written notification of the need for the subcontract must be given to and approved by the campus Chancellor where the project is to be housed, and the System President or their designee(s), prior to letting the subcontract

4. When the sponsored project requires the purchase of equipment and other resources for the accomplishment of the desired results, such equipment and other resources will be maintained as a part of the holdings of Southern University unless the terms of the grant, contract or other document drawn by the funding sponsor states a position to the contrary. Thus, subcontracts with entities external to the University must clearly recite the proprietary interest of Southern University in all equipment and other resources purchased with funds received through the University's prime contract and the University's right to reclaim such items when the project concludes.

5. All equipment purchased with funds through the primary contract must be reported to and properly tagged by the campus' Property Office and an inventory record established in the master file. All livestock acquired through the prime contract for experimental/research purposes is classified as property and must be recorded in the inventory without regard to the value of the animal. Reports of newly acquired property must be made to the Property Office within 10 days of receipt.

6. Indirect costs allowed in subcontracts will be limited to no more than the percentage approved in the primary contract. At no time will a portion of the indirect costs approved for Southern University as a prime contractor be passed on to a subcontractor. Only the indirect costs for the subcontractor(s) stated in the proposal shall be granted in the subcontract.

7. As prime contractor on a sponsored project, Southern University controls the rights to all project derivatives that are not restricted in the prime contract, including publication rights, copyrights, patents, licenses, etc. Prior to publishing and/or applying for copyrights, patents, licenses, etc., on any project facet, the primary author/inventor/applicant shall submit a written request for and receive written approval for the right to publish/apply for copyrights, patents, licenses, etc., from the Contracting Officer on the appropriate campus. Campus contracting officers shall obtain appropriate administrative approval prior to granting such requests.

8. A copy of the proposal must accompany the assessment of capabilities form when submitted or approval will be denied.

9. When approved by the System President, the Assessment of Capabilities form should be forwarded to the Chancellor, who shall send a copy to the Director of Sponsored Research for distribution to the Project Director/Principal Investigator and the Vice Chancellor.