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Research Administration at Tufts

Tufts research administration infrastructure is comprised of central offices within the Office of the Vice Provost for Research (OVPR), as well as local research administrators positioned within schools and centers. The Office of Research Administration (ORA) and Sponsored Programs Accounting (SPA) within the OVPR facilitate research and compliance by providing central pre-award and post-award services. Both offices work with local research administrators to support investigators in pursuing and managing sponsored funding. 

The mission of Research Administration at Tufts is to facilitate the research endeavors of Tufts University faculty, staff, and students via support of sponsored research activities. Please see the descriptions of pre- and post-award central administration and Local Research Administrators below to learn more about roles, responsibilities, and how Tufts research administration can help you.

Office of Research Administration (ORA): Central Pre-Award

Office of Research Administration (ORA): Central Pre-Award

Office of Research Administration (ORA) is responsible for pre-award and non-fiscal post-award administration of awards, including:

  • Proposal review, approval and submission
  • Award negotiation and the Point of Contact with funding agencies
  • Award acceptance, authorized representative/Signing Official that can legally bind Tufts
  • Subrecipient risk assessment, issuing subawards and amendments
  • Just-in-Time (JIT), no cost extensions, prior approvals
  • Facilitating compliance with federal, state, and agency regulations and internal policies that surround sponsored funding.

Click here for ORA staff and portfolio information.

Sponsored Programs Accounting (SPA): Central Post-Award

Sponsored Programs Accounting (SPA) is responsible for:

  • Financial oversight of all sponsored award activities from set up to closeout
  • Creating award accounts in the PeopleSoft Financial System
  • Determination if funding source is a gift or a sponsored award
  • Invoicing sponsors per the terms of the agreements, following up on outstanding payments, initiating letter of credit draws, preparing and submitting financial reports
  • Monitoring subrecipient audit findings, distributing award expiration notices, ensuring timely closeout of sponsored accounts
  • Coordination of financial audits and external compliance grant reviews
  • Providing federal costing compliance oversight, assessing financial transactions risk, auditing high risk expenditures
  • Processing all expense transfers involving sponsored awards
  • Administering the Quarterly Effort Reporting (QER) System, processing QER adjustments and retroactive labor adjustments involving sponsored awards
  • Approving: rebudgeting requests; e-reqs for subcontracts and consultant payments;
    equipment purchases (>5,000) and Capital Expenditure Authorizations (CEAs); all check vouches, all foreign travel reports;
    Interdepartmental Requisitions (IDRs)> $500; business expense reports >$500.

Click here for SPA staff and portfolio information

Local Research Administrators (LRAs)

Local Research Administrators (LRAs) provide pre-and post-award support to investigators who engage in sponsored activities related to research, teaching, and service. They are located at the schools and centers to provide hands-on active day-to-day support.

LRAs responsibilities include:

  • Facilitate investigator engagement with all research support offices
  • Acting as point of contact with Central Administration in pre- and post-award matters
  • Managing proposal preparation
  • Partnering with the Budget Center in preparation of the funding forecasts and plans to spend
  • Assisting the PI in fiscal management of his or her research portfolio (hard and soft money)
  • Promoting compliance with sponsor and Tufts policies.

Click here for LRA staff and portfolio information.