Managing an Award or Project

The Office of Sponsored Research advises and supports faculty throughout the duration of their projects and coordinates with funding sources on behalf of McGill regarding contractual matters.

However, project implementation remains the responsibility of the Principal Investigator. Please consult the appropriate regulations to ensure compliance with McGill policy.

Financial management and reporting

The Principal Investigator is the Fund Financial Manager (fund holder) of an award or project, and is responsible and accountable for that fund. The Principal Investigator is responsible for submitting narrative and financial reports to the funding source on time. The OSR will advise on the funding source's requirements and how to meet them.

Questions regarding financial transactions related to a project can be addressed to the Fund Administrator at McGill Financial Services's Research Financial Management Services unit. The Financial Services website also contains information on McGill Financial Policies and Procedures.

Funding holdbacks

Funding sources often hold funds back (holdbacks) until they have approved a project's final report. It is the Principal Investigator’s responsibility to ensure that reports are prepared and submitted on time.


Funding sources may contact the OSR or McGill Financial Services to conduct an audit of any project. Financial audits are handled by Research and Restricted Funds. If necessary, the Principal Investigator may be asked to assist in the audit process. Audits usually take place during project implementation but may also be conducted several years beyond the project end date.

Amendment to an agreement or a contract

A request for an amendment (to budget, scope, deadline, etc.) must be sent to the funding source, with a copy to the OSR, well in advance of relevant deadlines. Also, no expenses may be incurred after the end date specified in the funding agreement.

All amendments require formal approval by the funding source as well as the authorized university representative. The OSR reviews all amendments before recommending them for signature on behalf of McGill.

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