ALES Policy – Direct Grant Administrative Costs (DGAC)

Information on Direct Grant Administrative Costs (DGAC)

A number of our major research funders no longer pay overhead. Overhead is important and necessary for the Faculty of ALES, its Departments and its Principal Investigators, in supporting the actual costs of research. Some of these costs, such as research administration, should now be included in funding applications as a direct cost.

Do not include direct grant administrative costs in funding requests to the following.

• Tri-council.
• Funding agencies that pay overhead (regardless of percent overhead funder allows).
• Funding agencies with guidelines specifically stating they do not allow administrative costs.
• University of Alberta internal funds.

For all other funding applications, include direct grant administrative costs as an additional direct expense under the personnel category in the budget. To do that, use the table below. Once the direct expenses needed in each year have been determined as per the left hand column, add the applicable direct grant administrative costs amount as indicated in the right hand column.


Applications to Multiple Funders

If the application is going to multiple funders where some pay overhead and some do not, in addition to direct grant administrative costs, include the 20 % overhead or whatever overhead % is permitted in the funder guidelines. It may be removed later by some funders but it needs to be included since it is University of Alberta policy and some of the funders may pay it.

This does not apply to the Agriculture Funding Consortium, the major funders in the consortium do not accept overhead so just include direct grant administrative costs. Applications to individual funders within the consortium outside of the consortium process, should include overhead unless the proposed funder has specifically stated that they do not accept it.

Budget Commentary

In letters of Intent it is usually sufficient to define this cost as: Direct Grant Administrative Costs.

In full proposals define as: Direct Grant Administrative Costs; grant administration, research financial administration, trust human resources administration, and other general administrative costs relating to research.

The budget commentary must specify the amount of direct grant administrative costs in each year to allow this amount of administrative salaries to be transferred to the grant.

For applications going to multiple funders where both overhead and the direct grant administrative costs have been included, add the comment: For funders whose guidelines allow for overhead, the direct grant administrative costs will be removed.