Roles & Responsibilities

Requirements for Cost Share

Cost sharing commitments become requirements when the award contract is signed. If the university proposes cost sharing, the university agrees to the following:

  • University funds are provided to pay for expenses that directly benefit the project.
  • Cost shared expenses benefiting each project are tracked.
  • Cost shared expenses are purchased or services are rendered during the period of award.
  • Allowable costs are timely and accurately documented.
  • In-kind cost sharing is properly valued based on the (fair market) value added to the project.
  • Expenses designated as cost sharing are reviewed and approved by the Principal Investigator.
  • Records for cost-shared expenses are retained for the same period as other financial records for the sponsored agreement.


Tracking, reporting, and approval of cost shared expenses are shared responsibilities among principal investigator, department administrator (fiscal officer/account delegate/account associate), and Contracts & Grants Accounting (CGA fund manager):

The Principal Investigator (PI) is responsible for:

  1. Preparing the cost share pledge by:
  • Not cost sharing unless it's mandatory. Voluntary committed cost sharing is not expected nor used as a factor during the merit review of federal applications or proposals, per Uniform Guidance §200.306. For proposal opportunities where cost sharing is not a requirement, it is in the best interest of the university to directly charge federal agencies for project expenses instead of offering to cost share. When cost share is proposed and the award is made, it becomes a binding commitment which the university must provide and document as part of the performance of the sponsored agreement.
  • Clearly documenting and quantifying any cost sharing on the proposal budget and/or budget justification; see [reference page] for allowable cost share.
  • Leaving any discussion of cost sharing out of any other proposal text.
  • Attaching signed documentation from each source promising to contribute. If the contribution is from the university, a signed letter from a provost, dean, or chair is acceptable. If the contribution is from a third party (not UC Davis or the sponsor), the letter must be on the contributor's letterhead and submitted with the rest of the proposal package. [Refer to requirements for 3rd party documentation.]
  1. Reviewing expense information and signing off on the contribution reports in the Cost Share Application to ensure that:
    • All cost-shared expenses reported benefited the project, and that
    • All cost sharing obligations are met in a timely manner, and
    • Cost share contribution reports are submitted at the required intervals.
  1. Monitoring for conditions that require sponsor approval or notification
    • Principal investigators should notify the Office of Research as soon as they reasonably know that the cost sharing commitment for a particular project may not, or will not, be fulfilled.
    • This includes situations when a principal investigator transfers to another institution during the performance period of a project, as the sponsor may hold UC Davis responsible for fulfilling all or a proportionate share of any cost sharing commitment associated with the project.

The Department Administrator is responsible for:

  • Reviewing, correcting, monitoring, and maintaining effort commitment data.
  • Compiling cost shared expenses in the Cost Share Application. For cross-college/department collaborations, the department that administers the contract/grant is responsible for communicating and coordinating with the other department(s) to ensure that effort and cost share commitments are met and contribution reports are finalized timely.
  • Working with the PI to ensure the cost share pledge is met.

Contracts & Grants Accounting is responsible for:

  • Setting up sponsored awards for cost sharing and establishing dates and frequency of report due reminder notifications.
  • Entering effort commitments for key personnel in the Effort Commitment system.
  • Notifying account managers and principal investigators that cost sharing data should be entered in the Cost Share Application.
  • Receiving the finalized and approved cost share contribution reports and reviewing for compliance with the award terms and conditions.
  • Reporting cost share to the sponsor as required.