Home | Resources | Subawards at proposal time

Incoming subaward:  another entity to ASU

A proposal where a subaward will be issued to ASU should be developed in ERA and follow the same steps as any other proposal submitted by ASU for funding. Subaward proposals should not be submitted to the other entity without ORSPA’s (PNT) endorsement.  Problems can arise later such as budget items that were not properly budgeted or delays in being able to issue an agreement between ASU and the other entity because of a lack of appropriate internal reviews and approvals.   Noncompliance with proposal development work instructions can potentially impact the ability of the ASU PI to begin their work on the project in a timely manner.

Outgoing subaward: ASU to another entity

What should a PI consider when selecting a subrecipient?

There a number of things that the PI should consider.   These include:

  • The technical expertise (qualifications) of the subrecipient PI and institution
  • Past experiences with the subrecipient PI and institution
  • His/her availability to do the project during the anticipated project period
  • The cost of the proposed subaward
  • The type of entity

What should be requested from the subrecipient at proposal time?


It is important to use the right vehicle to ensure the pilot can proceed properly and to ensure that a subaward can be awarded.  Use of the wrong form will delay issuance of the subaward.

  • Scope of Work (aka SOW)
  • Budget in the format required by the sponsor
  • Budget justification, as required by the sponsor   
  • Anything else required by the sponsor such as current and pending support, biosketches, facilities statement, etc. The needs will vary from FOA to FOA.
  • Facilities and Administrative rate agreement
  • Fringe benefits rate agreement
  • Provide the subrecipient’s administrative person with date on which you need the information in order to complete the overall proposal to be submitted by ASU. It is recommended that RAs allow no less than 5 days. This will help ensure that the ASU proposal as a whole can be circulated internally and submitted on time to the sponsor.

My subrecipient has never worked with ASU before.  How can I help them become familiar with our institutional requirements?

The subawards team has prepared information specifically to assist subrecipients with administrative and fiscal management responsibilities resulting from subawards issued by ASU.  Please provide your colleagues at the subrecipient institution with subrecipient information.    

Why is it important to obtain subrecipient institutional approval at the time of proposal?

It might be tempting to await word that an award is forthcoming prior to obtaining official subrecipient documents, but delaying in this way can cause a number of issues:

  • The subawardee (aka as subrecipient) can decline to participate in the project if they did not sign off on their institution’s inclusion in the proposal.
  • The budget may not be accurate, potentially impacting the ASU PI who may need to pay for additional costs out of their own project to meet the subawardee’s institutional policies.
  • The subaward issuance may be significantly delayed while the RA seeks the required documents.
  • If the subawardee is new to federal support, registering and waiting approvals for the SAM system can potentially result in delays
  • If the research includes human or animal subjects, the subrecipient will need IRB/IACUC approvals, which can result in a time delay.
  • If the sponsor requires PS FCOI Compliance and the subrecipient is not compliant, a delay in issuing the agreement can occur.
  • If the subawardee’s work occurs early in the project, delays in getting the executed subaward agreement with the non-ASU PI’s institution can significantly hinder the ASU PI’s work.