A subcontract (or subaward) is a formal agreement between Northwestern University (serving as a Pass-through Entity) and a subrecipient under a sponsored program. The information below applies to outgoing subawards (from Northwestern). Incoming subawards (to Northwestern) are categorized and handled as funded agreements.
Northwestern’s Policy on Subcontracting on Sponsored Programs
Northwestern University is responsible for overseeing the programmatic and financial activities of subrecipients in the management of sponsored research. Northwestern University’s Policy on Subcontracting on Sponsored Projects provides the framework on which subawards are issued, managed, and closed during the lifecycle of a sponsored project.
Subcontracting Roles & Responsibilities
- Roles and Responsibilities of Northwestern faculty and staff in the context of subawards and sponsored projects administration
- Relationship between Sponsor, Pass-through Entity, and Subrecipient Diagram
Subrecipient Risk Assessment
A subrecipient risk assessment is conducted, and subaward terms and conditions are written to address the corresponding level of risk. The prime sponsor holds Northwestern University responsible for the performance of work by subrecipients. Subrecipient monitoring enables Northwestern University to review scientific progress, expense allocation, and confirm that the subrecipient is performing according to the Principal Investigator’s programmatic needs. For outgoing subawards (from Northwestern), most of the primary award terms and conditions will flow through to the subrecipient, particularly the regulatory requirements and obligations. The subaward agreement will also incorporate the subrecipient’s proposed scope of work and budget. Adjustments might be necessary if the prime award is reduced.