Record Management

Roles and Responsibilities

Principal Investigator

The principal investigator should set up a filing system for each project. There are two approaches to setting up a filing system. A separate file folder may be set up for each year of a multi-year project, or a separate file folder may be set up for each type of document to be filed. The types of documents to be filed are:

  • Proposal
  • Continuation Proposals
  • Sponsor Specific Guidelines
  • Project Specific Guidelines (if applicable, and spelled out in award document)
  • Request for Proposal (RFP)
  • Forms
  • Budget Revisions
  • Award Documents
  • Continuation Award Documents (Modifications)
  • Correspondence (incoming and outgoing)
  • E-mail
  • Telephone notes
  • Technical reports
  • Presentations
  • Copies of transparencies
  • Site Visits

Arrangements for administrative support vary by department. 


Department level research administrators with accounting purview should keep filing systems for the following:

  • Award documents
  • Modifications
  • Continuations
  • Program guidelines
  • Supporting documentation for purchase orders such as check requests, accounting assistance requests, travel documents, personnel documents, etc.

Sponsored Projects & Contracting Services

Sponsored Projects & Contracting Services maintains a file consisting of:

  • Original Proposal Routing Sheet and attachments
  • Original award document or notification
  • Original modifications
  • Correspondence between Sponsored Projects & Contracting Services and the awarding agency or organization
  • Cost transfers
  • Invoices
  • Deposits
  • Correspondence between the principal investigator/research administrator and the sponsor program officer
  • Copies of financial status reports prepared for the sponsor

Records are retained for at least three years from the date of final closeout.

See the Financial Services Manual, Section 16.01 and the Records Management and Archives for more information. 

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