Office of the Vice Provost for Research

The Tufts Office of the Vice Provost for Research (OVPR) strives to provide high quality services to faculty and staff and to increase the funding available to support research and scholarship, all the while protecting the University’s interests and ensuring that Tufts is in compliance with all relevant laws and regulations. Please click here for more information about Tufts OVPR and see links to highlighted research-related policies and guidance below.

Allowability of Costs

  • Federal guidelines outline what types of costs are allowable (able to be charged to a grant or contract), and those that are unallowable (those that cannot be charged.) All expenses charged to sponsored accounts must:
    • Be allowable. Allowable expenses are reasonable and necessary to carry out the aims and goals of the project. Allowable expenses must be treated consistently and conform to any limitations or exclusions set forth in the relevant federal regulations (if applicable), the sponsored agreement, and the University policy.
      • Be allocable. An expense is allocable if it is incurred solely to advance the work under the agreement or if it benefits both the sponsored agreement and other work of the institution, in proportions that can be approximated through use of reasonable methods.
      • Be reasonable. A reasonable cost is one that a prudent person would have incurred under the circumstances prevailing when the purchase was made.
      • Be consistently treated. Costs incurred for the same purpose, in like circumstances, must be treated consistently as either a direct or Facilities & Administrative (F&A) costs.

5 Day Rule: Institutional Review Process for Proposal Submission

“All completed applications for sponsored funding must be finalized and routed for approval no later than 5 business days before the proposal is due to the funding agency or prime institution in cases where Tufts is a subcontract.”

Animal Care and Use Policy

“IACUC ensures compliance by monitoring animal care and use through different mechanisms: (1) Review and approval of all research and procedures proposed through the use of protocols and amendments. (2) Inspection of all animal facilities and laboratories where animal work occurs. (3) Review and generation of institutional policies and guidelines. (4) Reports to the federal agencies.” Researchers can find all the forms and procedural information necessary on the IACUC website in order to get started. A password for policies will be provided after researchers are in added to the system and vetted.

Affiliation Agreement Approval Process Policy

“All agreements of Tufts University and its units with universities, non-profit organizations, or other entities, both international and domestic, must go through an internal review process prior to signing to ensure compliance with university policies and confirm institutional approval and support.”

Conflict of Commitment Policy

“It is both appropriate and desirable that many Tufts faculty members be involved in professional and other outside activities, in the practice of their profession, in consulting, guest lecturing at other institutions, and serving in professional and community organizations. Such activities extend the faculty member’s professional competence, enrich the teaching he or she can provide at Tufts, and contribute to the advancement of the profession. Questions frequently arise about the extent of such involvement or the appropriateness of certain activities. Guidelines are available to assist individual faculty members and senior academic administrators in identifying (and, if possible, avoiding) possible problems in this area.”

Conflict of Interest: Financial & Personal Conflict

Given that the University allows and encourages outside activities and relationships that enhance the mission of the University, potential conflicts of interest and commitment are inevitable. Outside activities should not, however, interfere with an individual’s University obligations. Employees and Advisors must not use their official University positions or influence for gain or advancement for themselves, parents, siblings, spouse or partner, children, dependent relatives, or other personal associates, at the expense of the University. All actual and potential conflicts of interest or commitment must be disclosed to a designated University official; evaluated; and, if found to be significant, eliminated or managed.

Conflict of Interest: Research

In the context of conducting Research, the primary interest of a researcher should be the objective conduct of the Research.  Coupled with this, the researcher, the University, and the public share an interest in the complete, objective and timely communication of Research results.  While the University expects that all of its faculty and other Research staff should carry out their professional responsibilities with the highest standards of personal integrity, it is necessary to provide measures to reduce, eliminate or manage situations in which a secondary interest could be reasonably expected to influence the design, conduct or reporting of Research.  For this reason, the University has adopted this Research Conflicts of Interest Policy (the “Policy”). 

Comparative Medicine Services (CMS)

Tufts Comparative Medicine Services (Tufts CMS) provides animal care, including the provision of housing for and humane care to all animals utilized at the Boston Health Sciences campus of Tufts University, Tufts Medical Center, and the Medford/Somerville campus of Tufts University. For access to the full policies please email, for the password.

Cost Sharing on Sponsored Awards

Cost sharing is any project cost that is not paid or reimbursed by the sponsor to support the scope of work defined by the award. Matching refers to the sponsor requirement that the University match grant funds in some proportion with cost shared funds. This policy applies to cost sharing on both Federal and non-Federal awards received by the university. 

Facilities & Administrative (F&A) Costs on Sponsored Awards: Recovery and Distribution

F&A costs are incurred by all sponsored projects or programs regardless of the source of funding and regardless of whether F&A costs are included in sponsored program budgets. Tufts University requires the use of applicable Tufts rates for budgeting of the F&A costs on all proposals for sponsored funding.

No-Cost Extension

No-cost extension is an extension of the period of performance of an award beyond the original end date without additional funds. This extension may not be exercised solely for the purpose of using an unobligated balance; there must be a programmatic reason for the extension. To initiate a no-cost extension, the Local Research Administrator (LRA) works together with the Principal Investigator (PI) to complete the No Cost Extension Form

Responsible Conduct of Research

Some funding agencies, including the NSF and NIH, require certain members of the research team to receive training in the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR).

Salary and Wage Distribution and Certification Policy

This policy applies to all salary and wage distribution, sponsored and non-sponsored, and salary and wage certification on sponsored projects.

Scientific Integrity in Research Policy

It is the responsibility of Tufts University faculty, staff and students to report any incident of potential research misconduct in good faith and in accordance with the definitions and terms of the Tufts University Policy on Scientific Integrity and the Consequences of Misconduct in Research. It is also incumbent upon each of these individuals to promote scientific integrity, to protect the health and safety of the public, and to conserve public funds that support research.