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About Awards

The Awards Group

Provides grant and contract accounting support for extramural funds that are awarded to the University for sponsored research activities. In general, the Awards group provides:    

  • Just In Time (JIT) requests

  • Award set-up in UC Merced's Financial Systems

  • Award Negotiation

  • Financial reporting to our sponsors

  • Invoicing/Federal Drawdown

  • Accounts-receivable collections

  • Cash management

  • Modifications/Rebudgets

  • Technical/Financial Reporting

  • A-133 audit coordination

  • Campus-wide training and technical assistance

  • Effort reporting

  • Campus-wide Training

Award Negotiation

It is the policy of the University of California, Merced that all sponsored awards must be reviewed and accepted by the campus office with the appropriate delegated authority.  Currently, the only office at the university with this authority is Sponsored Research Services. Sponsored accounts are generally created in the university’s accounting system upon award acceptance. However, pre-award spending accounts may be set up in accordance with the Pre-Award Spending Policy.

The Awards Team is responsible for negotiating terms and conditions of awards resulting from the submission of requests for funding, and various other research related agreements, including Material Transfer Agreements (MTA), Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA), and collaboration agreements, among others. The Awards group also has responsibility for issuing agreements to lower tier sub-recipients (Subawards) under the prime awards. 

Investigators should not enter into or sign any legal and/or binding agreements on behalf of The Regents of the University of California.

Agreement Review 

The following definitions are for use in determining the type of contractual mechanism being utilized by a Sponsor. Each of the described terms constitutes a subset under the umbrella term “agreement.” An agreement is usually a legally binding document between two parties that describes the obligations and commitments of the parties. There are numerous documents that may be used: 

  • Memorandum of Agreement (MOA)

  • Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

  • Research Agreement

  • Technical Testing Agreement

  • Material Transfer Agreement 

  • Non-Disclosure Agreement 

The Most Common mechanisms used are grants and contracts:

1.     Grant:

  • A grant is the least restrictive of contractual mechanisms. It is typically issued by federal sponsors under a “financial assistance” program. The award supports basic research to benefit the public good and one or more progress reports may be the expected deliverable.

2.     Contract:

  • A contract, under this definition, is issued to support a “procurement” activity, the results of which are needed for the sponsor’s use in its own work. It is the most restrictive of the contractual mechanisms and may include very specific requirements for deliverables and ownership of same.  The primary goal is acquisition of goods and services and the beneficiary is the sponsor.