Electronic Research Administration (eRA)
Many external funding sponsors (government and private) are converting to computer-based systems for funding notification, grant submission, and administration of awards.
This process is called Electronic Research Administration (eRA).
What is eRA?
Electronic Research Administration (eRA) is the paperless transfer of extramural research grant applications, reports, award documents, and administrative data. More simply put: using your computer not paper!Electronic Grant Submissions
Important Direction Regarding Electronic Proposal Submissions: Recent technological advances in Electronic Research Administration (ERA) have enabled many funding agencies to utilize electronic proposal submission procedures. In many cases, electronic submission is mandatory through web portals.
Regardless of the mode of submission, ALL externally funded proposals MUST be routed through the normal review processes and approved by JMU university authorities prior to submission. Principal Investigators are not authorized to submit proposals without routing the proposal for internal JMU approval just as if the proposal were a traditional "paper" submission. In the case of Electronic Proposal Submissions, the OSP should always be designated as the institution's "Authorized Representative."
This oversight of the electronic proposal submission process is necessary to ensure that all research and other extramurally funded projects conducted by university employees comply with relevant JMU policies including, but not limited to the following:
- appropriateness of the activity to the university
- protection of human and animal subjects and the environment
- use of university facilities
- personnel compensation plans
- intellectual property
- conflicts of interest
- recovery of direct and indirect costs
- Principal Investigator eligibility
A growing number of government agencies and private organizations have developed online electronic grant submission programs in addition to or as a replacement for traditional hard copy grant submission. In an effort to aid Principal Investigators with electronic submissions, OSP has created a list of Funding Sponsors that use electronic grant submission services.
Please visit Federal Sponosrs to review Sponsor's application guidelines, award procedures, and other agency information, as well as a brief description of their specific services. If you are interested in submitting a proposal using one of the listed sponsors, please contact OSP for additional instructions on how to proceed.
Electronic systems are generally web-based and allow us to:
- prepare, review and submit proposals
- monitor their progress with the sponsor
- administer their award funding
- provide reports on project progress
- request no-cost extensions, change PI, etc.
- closeout awards
Why are so many sponsors requiring electronic submission of proposals, reports, etc.?
In 1999, the President signed the Federal Financial Assistance Management Improvement Act (Public Law 106-107) which mandated:
- improve the effectiveness and performance of Federal grant programs,
- simplify grant application and reporting requirements,
- improve the delivery of services to the public, and
- facilitate greater coordination among those responsible for delivering such services. In essence, it requires federal agencies to migrate to electronic systems from their paper-based systems in order to lower the cost, reduce administrative effort, expedite the processing of extramural grants, and speed up announcements to the grantee community.