Focused Topics are one to one-and-a-half hour sessions on a specific topic. Topics have been chosen based on requests from departments, areas of risk or a new policy or procedure. For all Focused Topic sessions: Please register on the OFS/iSite/Training Sign up page.
Next Session Tuesday, March 4, 2-3 p.m., Kresge 213
Facilitators: Marisa Anderson, Senior Sponsored Research Administrator and Vanessa Barton, Senior Sponsored Research Administrator
Description: Questions often arise as to what to include in Other Support. In particular how to handle dual appointments of senior/key personnel, what is meant by measurable effort, and what to include in an effort or scientific overlap statement. In this session you will learn how to handle these situations and apply what you learn to a case example.
Audience: Research Administrators responsible for putting together Other Support Documentation.
Next Session: Tuesday, March 11, 2-3 p.m., Kresge 213
Facilitators: Elaine Kiley, Associate Director of Sponsored Programs Administration and Nicole Bourne, Sponsored Research Administrator
Description: GMAS Action Memos summarize pertinent details about awards in a standard format across the University. An Action Memo provides the blueprint for recording and maintaining award data for all Harvard sponsored projects. During this focused topic, we will examine the components of Action Memos.
Audience: Action Memo Recipients and anyone with a financial role interested in learning more about Action Memos.
Next Session: Tuesday, March 18, 2-3 p.m., Kresge 204
Facilitators: Elaine Kiley, Associate Director of Sponsored Programs Administration and Patrick O’Neill, Associate Director of Sponsored Programs Administration.
Description: In the current economic environment federal agencies, particularly NIH, are carefully scrutinizing unobligated balances. During this focused topic, we will discuss the importance of monitoring the “burn rate” for a project, how to best report on large unobligated balances in NIH progress reports and how to submit prior approval carryover requests.
Audience: Anyone involved in the financial management of a project (GMs, ADFs, Program Staff)
Terms and Conditions
Next Session Tuesday, March 25, 2-3 p.m., Kresge 907
Facilitator: Elaine Kiley, Associate Director of Sponsored Programs Administration and Patrick O’Neill, Associate Director of Sponsored Programs Administration
Description: In this session the participants will examine both a typical federal and non-federal award notice. The importance of the award notice and its role as the bridge between pre-award and post-award will be explored. The participants will also practice establishing the relevant policies, best practices, and explanations pertinent to managing a sponsored project.
Audience: This class is intended for anyone who manages or participants in sponsored projects, with a specific focus on those who are responsible for implementing and/or adhering to the award notice.
System Tools – Access, Use and Interfaces
Next Session Tuesday, April 1, 2-3 p.m., Kresge 907
Facilitator: Diane Standring, Administrative Training and Support Specialist
Description: There are many systems at Harvard to help research administrators and financial staff do their jobs. Do they talk to each other? How does one get access to them? Which systems are used for what tasks? This focused topic answers these questions and more about the systems that we use at HSPH when managing sponsored programs. You will leave the session with information about getting access to systems, how they interface with each other and system resources and training.
Audience: Staff who work with Harvard’s financial systems and/or manage sponsored programs and want a better idea of how the various systems interface.
Research Performance Progress Reports (RPPR)
Next Session Tuesday, April 8, 2-3 p.m., FXB G03
Facilitators: Vanessa Barton, Senior Sponsored Research Administrator and Caitlin Alfaro, Senior Grant Manager, Genetics & Complex Diseases
Description: Progress reports are required annually to document grantee accomplishments and compliance with terms of award. They describe scientific progress, identify significant changes, report on personnel, and describe plans for the subsequent budget period or year. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has mandated that federal agencies implement a federal-wide research performance progress report (RPPR) to standardize recipient reporting on federally-funded research projects.
NIH has begun transitioning progress reports to RPPR, beginning with eSNAP. Traditional paper submissions will follow. The format of this focused topic will be an open discussion to give participants an opportunity to share their transition from eSNAP to RPPR experiences.
Audience: Anyone involved in RPPR submissions
Public Access Compliance Nuts and Bolts
Next Session: Tuesday, April 15, 2-3 p.m., FXB, G03
Facilitators: Scott Lapinski, Digital Resources and Services Librarian, Countway Library
Description: Public Access shares research results broadly and quickly so they can impact research and practice. The NIH Public Access Policy affects progress reports, biosketches, and awards. HSPH’s Public Access policy affects journal submissions. Learn how to help your PIs comply proactively and efficiently with both policies, and what to do when noncompliance affects grants management.
Audience: Grant Managers, Faculty Assistants, ADFs, DAs
Guidelines for Federal Sponsored Expenditures
Next Session: Tuesday, April 22, 2-3 p.m., Kresge 907
Facilitator: Eileen Nielsen, Director Research Administration Education
Description: Indirect costs may seem intangible, but they are real costs and cannot be direct charged to federally sponsored research. Indirect costs include items such as administrative salaries, communications costs, office supplies, photocopying, proposal preparation, subscriptions, general purpose equipment, computers and data storage devices. So, if asked to direct charge these expenses to a sponsored award what should you do?
In this session we will talk about the costs that are included in the F&A rate, where to find this information, and how to explain why F&A costs cannot be direct charged to a sponsored project. You will also learn about situations where costs that are normally considered indirect can be direct charged to a sponsored project.
Audience: HSPH researchers and administrators who charge items directly to federal sponsored projects.
Next Session: To be scheduled
Facilitators: Melissa Francis, Associate Director of Research Administration and Marisa Anderson, Senior Sponsored Research Administrator
Description: The Budget Narrative is the justification of “how and/or “why a line item helps to meet the program deliverables. This topic explains the best way to identify the important components of the budget narrative.
Audience: Grant Managers who work with Principal Investigators on budget narrative composition and development.