Recently DER was asked to provide definitions regarding project roles for project personnel. Below is a great article from OSP that helps define roles. Be sure to use the article below when determining the role for senior personnel in your proposal.
When the PI is selecting investigators for a proposal, care should be taken to identify their appropriate role. Choosing ineligible investigators or mis-categorizing collaborators as principal investigators, can increase the difficulty of proposal preparation and create potential award processing delays. It can also increase compliance issues (e.g. financial conflict of interest certification, training, etc.) and complicate project management and reporting requirements. MSU’s PI (also referred to as Project Director or PD) has the option of including a collaborator as either a Co-PI, subaward PI, Key Personnel (e.g. Co-Investigator) or an Other Significant Contributor (OSC – which may include a consultant) in an application to the sponsor.
The differences between each designation may sometimes appear minor but can have a substantial impact on the direction or control of your project. For example, a Co-PI usually has the ability to communicate directly with the sponsor with or without the PI’s input or approval. A subaward PI usually cannot have direct communications with the sponsor nor would they have the same level of responsibility for the overall project, which gives the lead PI more control over the overall project.
Each sponsor can have its own definitions of PI, Co-PI, Subaward PI, Key Personnel/Co-I and OSC. Please pay close attention to the eligibility requirements of the Sponsor’s RFP. For example, it is not unusual in a fellowship proposal for the sponsor to require that the fellow be identified as the PI during the dissertation stage of their training.
Tip: Depending upon a fellow’s level of education, he or she may not be able to approve and complete their certifications and disclosures in the KC system. Use the following link to learn how to establish a NetID and ZPID as well as to work with the KC Helpdesk to set up an affiliation for that individual: https://osp.msu.edu/PL/Portal/DocumentViewer.aspx?cga=aQBkAD0AMQAxADMAOQA=
Subject to varying sponsor requirements, here are some basic definitions and general guidelines to follow:
Is an individual viewed by the applicant organization to have the appropriate level of authority and responsibility to direct a project or program.
Is generally defined as those who are responsible for the design, conduct, or reporting of the funded research.
Has the responsibility for overseeing the project intellectually, logistically, and financially.
Is responsible and accountable to the applicant organization, sponsor, and any collaborating organizations for the proper conduct of the project including conducting the project ethically, following financial and compliance regulations, and submitting all required reports punctually.
The subaward PI/Co-PI is generally defined as those who are responsible for the design, conduct, or reporting of the specific subaward statement of work and related subaward funding amount, and as stated earlier, does not have direct communication with MSU’s sponsor.
When subawards are included in the project, the subawardee’s Co-PI(s) can be considered part of senior personnel, if appropriate to role and sponsor definitions.
Collaborators who are not financially responsible (i.e. do not have the responsibility and ability to control the expenses of a project) should not be included in the proposal as a Co-PI.
Key personnel investigators (Key Personnel/Co-I) are generally defined as other individuals who contribute to the scientific development or execution of a project in a substantive, measurable way, whether or not they receive salaries or compensation under the grant.
Other Significant Contributors (OSC)
are individuals whom commit to contribute to the scientific development or execution of the project, but do not commit any specified measurable effort (i.e., person months) to the project. These individuals are typically presented at effort of “zero person months” or "as needed". Note: Consultants should be included as an OSC if they meet this definition. This is a NIH designation.
Adjunct faculty, research associates, and clinical faculty are not normally considered eligible for PI/Co-PI status. Depending on project and sponsor, in some circumstances, it may be appropriate to request PI exception approval from Office of Research & Innovation (ORI). See the following link for more information about acquiring PI exception approval: https://www.cga.msu.edu/PL/Portal/DocumentViewer.aspx?cga=aQBkAD0AMwA4ADkA
If you have additional questions regarding project roles and existing internal or external rules/requirements, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has advanced tremendously and today promises personalized healthcare; enhanced national security; improved transportation; more effective education, and precision agriculture. Development of AI technologies has the potential to improve commerce, manufacturing, logistics, medicine, and agriculture, so USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), the National Science Foundation and other partner agencies are jointly sponsoring the AI Institutes program. Advancing and deploying new approaches and applications of AI is a natural extension to agricultural production and food security. There are numerous opportunities to apply transformative, user-inclusive data-driven research methods and algorithm development to the food and agricultural sector to yield meaningful insights, predictive tools, and real-time solutions for production; food processing; transportation and storage; wholesale and retail marketing; and high-quality products and information for consumers. AI Research Institutes that simultaneously advance foundational AI research and agriculture and food systems might build new multidisciplinary communities and create the workforce needed for an AI-powered revolution in agriculture. Deadline to apply is May 13, 2022. For more information, read the AI Research Institutes funding opportunity announcement.
Organizing the ocean of public data using machine learning
Each year, the National Science Foundation’s Faculty Early Career Development Program, or CAREER, awards grants to “early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education.” The following story is part of a series highlighting Michigan State University recipients of NSF 2021 CAREER Awards.
Data from more than two million biological experiments are available through public online databases, but much of this information is not used by the biological and biomedical researchers who need it.
One reason is a lack of standards for the information contained in each sample that can be vague or incomplete. A human tissue sample, for example, may not include its origin, say heart, kidney or brain.
Michigan State University’s Arjun Krishnan is working to standardize the information reported about each sample and make it searchable for researchers through a web interface. …
With the support of a 2021 National Science Foundation Career award, Krishnan will analyze large datasets using high-performance computing. It is important for researchers to access the data and to develop research skills that can be applied elsewhere using rapidly changing tools and techniques. …
The Elsa U. Pardee Foundation investigators in United States non-profit institutions proposing research directed toward identifying new treatments or cures for cancer.The deadline for the Elsa U. Pardee Foundation’s Winter 2022 grant round is December 31, 2021. By design, there are no limits set on the grant amount that can be requested. It must be reasonably and clearly supported by the scope of the project outlined in the application. However, most grants appear to be within the $100,000 to $180,000 range. The Pardee Foundation’s grantmaking is very competitive, and grants are made to researchers at universities throughout the United States. In the last couple of years, the Foundation has been especially interested in research being done to detect and fight highly virulent forms of cancer. Final Board review/approval will take place in May 2022. In the past, faculty in several MSU units have gotten research awards from the Pardee Foundation.
The Elsa U. Pardee Foundation funds research by investigators in United States non-profit institutions proposing research directed toward identifying new treatments or cures for cancer. The Foundation funds projects for a one year period which will allow establishment of capabilities of new cancer researchers, or new cancer approaches by established cancer researchers. It is anticipated that this early stage funding by the Foundation may lead to subsequent and expanded support using government agency funding.Project relevance to cancer detection, treatment, or cure should be clearly identified. Papers verifying nonprofit status and relevant human subject and experimental animal treatment approvals from the recipient institution will be requested prior to project initiation. A final report summarizing financial expenditure and research achievement is required.
Description: This webinar titled “Finding Funding” presented by Dr. Lauren Aerni-Flessner (Grant and Project Management Specialist in the College of Engineering), will walk you through tips for finding funding opportunities to support your research. It will cover the information you need to begin your search, and useful strategies for finding government and foundation funding opportunities. Additionally, you will learn effective practices for successfully targeting funding sources that align with your focused research and increase your probability of funding. All researchers are welcome and are encouraged to be prepared with any questions.
Description: Writing a clear and persuasive grant proposal can be difficult for new grant writers, even for those with experience successfully publishing their academic work. Success in grant writing requires different skills than writing for an academic journal, as grant writing focuses on persuading readers and ‘selling’ a project to funders. During this seminar, Dr. Lauren Aerni-Flessner (Grant and Project Management Specialist in the College of Engineering) will walk you through effective strategies for enhancing the persuasiveness of your next grant proposal. Together you will learn proven tips for crafting a persuasive grant proposal and increase your funding success. All researchers are welcome and are encouraged to be prepared with any questions. Watch it now on demand!!!