Negotiate And Accept Award
All agreements related to research activities are processed through the Office of Research Administration (ORA). ORA’s Contract Administrators are responsible for the review, negotiation – if necessary- and execution of research agreements which include awards, subawards, consortia memberships, non-disclosure agreements, memorandums of understanding (MOUs), teaming agreements, etc.
Steps in the process include the following:
ORA Receives Agreement
- Most agreements are received electronically
- If an agreement is sent directly to a PI, it should be forwarded to email@example.com for internal routing and processing
Contracts Team Reviews and Negotiates
- Contract Administrators ensure that all agreements comply with federal and state laws and Mines’ policies
- If the agreement requires negotiation, the Contract Administrator will work closely with the sponsor and PI
Acceptance & Creation of Banner Index
- Agreements require acceptance and/or execution by the Mines Authorized Institutional Official
- Contract Administrators handle the signature process
- Funded agreements are then set up in Banner for PI access
Common Research Agreements
An agreement often used by the federal government and non-profits to sponsor fundamental research. This type of agreement includes terms and conditions that encourage open dissemination of results, loosely defined deliverables and minimal sponsor involvement.
Sponsored Research Agreement (SRA)
A research agreement between Mines and a sponsor. An SRA contains specific terms and conditions outlining project objectives, timelines, deliverables, cost, publications, and the management of intellectual property.
Mines has multiple templates for SRAs. Your Contract Administrator can help you determine the best one to use for a specific project.
A type of federal research agreement issued to Mines after a competitive proposal process to carry out a scope of work. The agreement includes substantial involvement by the federal agency in the management of outcomes and deliverables.
A non-negotiable agreement used with multiple industry members that includes a predetermined membership fee. The agreement is different from an SRA because there are no performance-based milestones and results are shared among members.
Subaward & Subcontract
An agreement between Mines and another party to perform a substantive portion of the work on behalf of Mines under a Mines’ research project. The agreement includes all applicable requirements from the prime sponsor and outlines how Mines and the other organization will work together to complete the research.
Other Research Agreements
Intellectual Property Management Plan
An agreement to manage intellectual property arising from research performed by Mines and its partners. The agreement includes terms and conditions from the prime sponsor and addresses the commercialization of technologies and the dissemination of project results.
Interagency Personnel Agreement (IPA)/Joint Appointment
An agreement with other organizations to establish a shared employment relationship for an employee of Mines or the other organization. The agreement does not have specific deliverables but is often guided by each organization’s employment policies. Mines’ joint appointment policies can be found in the Faculty Handbook.
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
An agreement between two or more parties documenting the understanding of each party’s obligations towards a shared initiative. Typically, the language of an MOU is broad and references the need for more specific agreements. MOUs may also be called Teaming Agreements.
Nondisclosure & Confidentiality Agreement (NDA)
An agreement between parties that outlines how confidential information will be disclosed and protected. Mines has two templates for NDAs:
- Unilateral – only one party is disclosing confidential information
- Bilateral – two parties are disclosing confidential information
- Multi-Party – three or more parties are disclosing confidential information
Contracting with a University: What makes Mines unique?
As a public institution of higher education created by the Constitution of the State of Colorado, Mines is required to follow Mines’ policies, and federal and state regulations. Mines has limited ability to negotiate these terms and conditions:
Indemnification & Liability
Mines will not indemnify, defend or hold harmless any third parties or accept provisions that impose unlimited liabilities. Mines can agree to be responsible for our own negligent acts and omissions.
Mines must retain ownership of intellectual property first conceived or reduced to practice by Mines employees. Mines is able to provide sponsors with a variety of licensing options to meet their needs.
It is Mines’ mission, as an institution of higher education, to disseminate the results of our research through academic journals, conferences, posters and graduate thesis publications. Mines will not accept agreements that prohibit or restrict publications.
Mines can agree to protect sponsor confidential information, but must be free to disseminate research results created by Mines.
Mines is subject to the Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) and cannot agree to keep our contractual relationships or research projects confidential. Mines can agree to keep any data provided to us by our Sponsors confidential but since our research projects support students, Mines requires that all confidential information be marked to ensure protection.
Mines will not agree to have our contracts governed by another State or Country’s governing law. Mines will agree to State of Colorado governing law or remain silent.
Mines will not warrant or guarantee the outcome of the research project or any developed intellectual property. We can agree to meet the project specifications or deliverables.
Mines does not hold the necessary clearances to conduct classified research on campus.
Modifications to Agreements
Agreements document the relationship between Mines and its partners. Often the relationship can change or evolve over time and updates to the agreement are needed; ORA’s Contract Administrators can assist in this process.
Common changes that require modifications to agreements include revisions to:
- Key Personnel
- Project Timelines and Periods of Performance
- Scope of Work or Deliverables
- Project Costs and Budgets
- Payment Schedules
Who can help me with my research agreement?
ORA’s Contract Administrators can help you with all your agreements or answer any questions you may have about the process. Contract Administrators are assigned to serve certain departments.
What do I do if I receive an agreement?
Forward the agreement to firstname.lastname@example.org. ORA Contract Administrators will review and finalize the agreement on your behalf. PIs do not have authority to sign agreements.
My agreement isn't final but I need to start my research, what do i do?
ORA recognizes that the arrival or negotiation of an award does not always follow the timeline of a project. In order to better facilitate the start or continuation of a project, ORA may approve At-Risk spending.