Who Can Apply as a PI
Who Can Apply as a Principal Investigator
Researchers and scholars are allowed to submit proposals for funding to external sponsors as Principal Investigator under certain conditions provided they obtain the written endorsement of their Chair and/or Center Director and their Dean (or their designee) for each instance. Approval of the Chair and/or Center Director and the Dean (or their designee) signifies that the researcher or scholar has the appropriate qualifications and adequate space and resources to conduct the proposed project. The signature of the chair and Dean/Director on the endorsement form acknowledges the approval of the submission including that the applicant has the necessary skills and authority to perform the proposed work, provides acknowledgement that appropriate facilities and effort will be made available by the department and school and assures that project and budgetary oversight will be provided. The researcher or scholar must also be eligible to use and obtain the proper authorizations for use of human subjects, radioactive materials, laboratory animals and all other appropriate compliance approvals for the proposed project. In addition to approval by the aforementioned, all prospective applicants must be deemed eligible in accordance with any restrictions set forth by the sponsor.
Reason for the Procedure
With the integration of the University of Medicine and Dentistry and Rutgers, the State University, this Procedure is intended to provide clarity and instruction on who can submit applications for external grants as Principal Investigators and under what circumstances.
Who Should Read this Procedure:
- All members of the Rutgers University community who intend to seek external support for their research, programs or projects
- Deans, directors, chairs, department heads
- Departmental administrators
- Business managers
- Staff responsible for reviewing and/or approving sponsored proposal submissions
- All staff in the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP)
The following individuals may apply for external funding as Principal Investigator, with the endorsement of their Department Chair and/or Center Director and their Dean (or Dean’s designee) or the appropriate senior leadership of other University units:
- Full-time or part-time tenured or tenure-track faculty
- Full-time faculty or faculty equivalent appointments who are not on tenure-track (such as Research Associate Professors, Research Assistant Professors)
- Co-terminus, or adjunct faculty with a paid appointment at the University with sufficient time and effort for the work proposed.
- Others hired by individual faculty members using grant funds (such as Research Associates, Research Assistants, Post-Doctoral Fellows and Associates)
- Staff Members with responsibility for managing a unit with its own budget may be designated as Principal Investigator.
The following individuals may apply for external funding as Co-Principal Investigator, with the endorsement form approval of their Department Chair and/or Center Director and their Dean (or Dean’s designee)
- Emeritus or retired faculty
Important Exceptions and potential issues:
- In the event an individual is currently a Part-Time Adjunct Faculty member, Lecturer or a Visiting Professor, a letter from the Chair/Dean is required to acknowledge that should the grant be awarded, the personnel status of the individual will change to a paid appointment at a minimum at the effort required for the work funded as well as acknowledgement that space will be made available and project and budgetary oversight provided.
- In the event of a new hire, a copy of the signed offer letter indicating the start date along with the endorsement form approval of their Department Chair and/or Center Director and their Dean (or Dean’s designee).
- Members of the Staff with appropriate skills, education, experience and authority for the work proposed but who do not manage a unit or have budgetary authority who wish to submit proposals must, in addition to all endorsement form requirements at time of submission, first obtain permission from the Associate Vice President for Research Administration via submission of a letter of justification from the Chair and Dean or equivalent of the School and/or unit under which they fall.
- Retired faculty should consult with the appropriate office to assure serving as a Co-PI will not alter their retirement status. In order for a retired faculty member to serve as a PI, he or she must, in addition to all endorsement form requirements at time of submission, first obtain permission from the Associate Vice President for Research Administration via submission of a letter of justification from the Chair and Dean or equivalent of the School and/or unit under which they fall.
In all cases only individuals who meet the eligibility requirements set forth by the external sponsor will be allowed to submit a proposal. The ORSP reserves the right to obtain additional justification in any case where eligibility is in question. Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the Senior Associate Director of ORSP as soon as a submission which may require additional approvals is identified.