Office of Sponsored Programs - 400.04 - Award Notification and Acceptance


Office of Sponsored Programs - 400.04 - Award Notification and Acceptance


This operating standard establishes the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) as the designated division responsible for accepting, administrating, negotiating, and managing sponsored awards on behalf of the University.

Policy Statement

The terms and conditions of any award notification from a funding agency require review by OSP's Research Administration unit before OSP's acceptance of the award on behalf of the University.

Principal Investigators (PIs) do not have the authority to accept awards. Awards to the University may be accepted only by the Chancellor or those to whom the Chancellor has delegated signatory authority. No other individuals are authorized to commit or otherwise bind the University in any agreement.

Also, OSP is responsible for negotiating appropriate terms if an award:

  • Contains provisions incompatible with University policy and operating standards
  • Is inconsistent with Federal regulations regarding sponsored research at universities
  • Fails to include all elements agreed upon before the award
  • Requires modifications to conform to the PI's needs

Upon formal acceptance of an award, the University becomes legally bound to abide by the terms and conditions as outlined in the executed agreement. Following acceptance, OSP informs the PI and Department Administrator (DA) of the accepted award notification, which is uploaded to the award module in Research Administration Management System and eSubmission (RAMSeS).

Project directors and PIs are responsible for conducting the sponsored effort in accordance with award terms and conditions and within the funds allocated for such effort.

Deans, directors, and department heads have corollary responsibility for assuring that all sponsored research and training conducted within their jurisdiction is consistent with University operating standards and available funds.


  • If the PI receives an award notification directly from an agency, they are required to notify OSP and forward the award notification to for any required signatures and set-up. Likewise, if any award funds are received by DAs, they must be sent directly to OSP for deposit.
  • Industry awards or other awards with non-standard patent, copyright, or licensing terms are reviewed in conjunction with the Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC) or other appropriate University units.
  • If the award is for less than the University-proposed amount, the amount may be prorated across budget categories to establish the award within the budget restraints. This can include a request to the department to prepare revisions to the budget.

Related Requirements

Contact Information

For questions regarding this operating standard and its related procedure, please contact

For questions regarding Pre-Award management or Post-Award administration, please contact the assigned Sponsored Projects Specialist (SPS).

For invoicing, reporting and other financial matters, please contact the assigned Sponsored Projects Accountant.
OSP Staff assignments are found in RAMSeS or on the OSP website.


History Table
Date Description
07/01/2022 Revised to reflect the new office name.
05/15/2018 Revised to coincide with the release of the new OSP Website.

The operating standards in the Office of Sponsored Programs Operating Standards & Procedures Manual supersede any OSP operating standards, procedures and appendices previously included in the University Business Manual, a publication of UNC-Chapel Hill’s Division of Finance.

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Article ID: 132301
Thu 4/8/21 9:28 PM
Fri 1/19/24 11:39 AM
Effective Date
If the date on which this document became/becomes enforceable differs from the Origination or Last Revision, this attribute reflects the date on which it is/was enforcable.
07/01/2022 12:00 AM
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
Vice Chancellor
Last Review
Date on which the most recent document review was completed.
01/19/2024 12:00 AM
Last Revised
Date on which the most recent changes to this document were approved.
07/01/2022 12:00 AM
Next Review
Date on which the next document review is due.
01/19/2025 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
07/01/2008 12:00 AM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
Research-Office of Sponsored Programs