Note: The policies and practices reflected in the answers to the questions below are subject to revision from time to time.
There is a faculty search process in place for all academic positions at Skoltech. Selection of Directors for the CREIs will follow this process. Proposers submitting a White Paper are asked to suggest names for possible CREI directors at Skoltech during the submission process. These names are confidential and will not be shared with reviewers but only used for internal puposes. Further definition of potential CREI directors will occur at the full proposal stage. If at the time of submission there is no confirmed Skoltech CREI director, then please enter TBD (to be determined) in the field marked Skoltech PI (Russian Institution).
Normally, SkolTech will expect a firm commitment (but not necessarily formal appointment and move to Moscow) from SkolTech CREI director to be in place before the main flow of funding starts. There can be different models of CREI director start up.
No, the participation of Skoltech faculty or Skoltech Founding Faculty Fellows is not required for a White Paper or proposal. If your team does include Skoltech faculty or Skoltech founding faculty fellows, you should list them as participants in the WP proposal cover page and submission system.
No. If Skoltech acts as a primary institution at the White Paper or proposal stage, Skoltech also needs to have a PI who has to be a full time Skoltech faculty member to be able to take responsibility for budgets, etc. Thus an FFF can be a proposal Co-PI at Skoltech only if there is also a PI at Skoltech responsible for the Skoltech participation. An FFF can, however, be a Co-PI (or even the primary PI) through their home institution, if that institution participates in the proposal.
• PIs =principal investigator
• M&S =materials and services
• RA =Research Assistant
• $CY =Dollars per calendar year
• F&A= Facilities and Administration (also known as overhead)
• Employee Benefits Rate = real salary/wage costs of personnel on the project
• Research F&A Rate= the overhead rate that applies to research projects at your institute
Major Equipment is defined as any single item of equipment, or systems of equipment, with an acquisition cost greater than 150000 RUB (one hundred fifty thousand rubles). All items with an acquisition cost of 150000 RUB (one hundred fifty thousand rubles) or less, even if colloquially referred to as "equipment," shall be deemed to be consumable materials and services and not as Major Equipment, except as otherwise required by Russian Accounting Standard.
Skoltech funds can be used to acquire Major Equipment for Skoltech. Skoltech funds cannot be used to acquire Major Equipment to be owned by Skoltech's partners or non-partners, in Russia or elsewhere.
It is recognized that Skoltech partners will need to acquire and use Major Equipment to fulfill their obligations to Skoltech. The following two options are available:
1) Major Equipment can be acquired using Skoltech funds for temporary use at another location, such as at a partner university. Skoltech shall own such Major Equipment, and shall have the option to require this Major Equipment be delivered to Skoltech at a later date.
2) Use of Major Equipment can be rented or leased by the Skoltech partner. It is allowable for a partner to use Skoltech funds for the rental or leasing of Major Equipment at a partner location, in lieu of acquisition.
Example A: Non Russian Partner (NRP) or other Skoltech partner leases Major Equipment on the commercial market, with the cost of leasing charged to the Skoltech NRP using Skoltech funds.
Example B: Non Russian Partner (NRP) or other Skoltech partner acquires Major Equipment using non Skoltech funds and then rents usage of such Major Equipment to the Skoltech NRP using Skoltech funds.
For audit and tracking purposes, a list of all Major Equipment purchased for Skoltech shall be periodically disclosed to Skoltech.
"The Biographical Sketch may not exceed two pages for each investigator." We expect the resume to be about one page long and the 10 relevant publications to take another page - for a total of two pages.
"The number of bios should be limited to five investigators," not including the principle investigator - for a total of six participants. It's assumed that these six key participants will appear on the final proposal and participate in the research activity, if selected. Please list the name and web site (if applicable) of any other important team members at the end of the resume section.
The Planning Award is designed to develop potential collaborations, laying the foundation for a future joint proposal.
Yes, simply mention in the first sentence that you are applying only for a planning award at this time.
Yes, simply indicate this in the first sentence, and we will attempt to connect you with potential collaborators, laying the foundation for a future joint proposal.
Fill in as much information as you have readily available, but at least the information covering the first five criteria. Attach resumes of key investigators, but do not submit a budget.
Each application should include an international (non-Russian) institution and one or two Russian institutions depending on whether or not Skoltech is one of the proposing institutions at this point. Final centers will be formed through a three-party agreement of an international institution, a Russian institution and Skoltech. Other institutions may be part of the collaboration, but may best be subcontracted to one of the three primary partner institutions. Clear justification for additional entities will need to support the application.
Submit one-page resumes plus up to 10 relevant publications of the principle investigator from each of two or three lead participants (non-Russian, Russian and/or Skoltech), and other key participants, up to a total of six from each of the lead participants. The assumption is that if a person is named as a key participant, they will appear on the final proposal and will participate in the research activity if selected. If there are other important members of the team, simply add them to the resume section as a list with a web site noted for each if available.
We expect similar commitments in terms of numbers of people and effort at each site.
No, use your best judgment to indicate how the activities of the center will ramp up over the first year or two of the center activities.
If your proposal includes a Skoltech PI and current faculty then a budget and personnel information should be included.
If your proposal does not include a Skoltech PI a maximum budget of $8 USD should be used for the non-Skoltech participants. The maximum budget per year is 12 M USD total if there are Skoltech participants.
Yes, you should propose a budget that addresses the issues, but is efficient in its use of resources. You can, for example, propose that expenses will ramp up at your institutions as Skoltech participants become involved. You do not have to budget for Skoltech costs, but it would be natural to add some activity at your institutions to complement the new Skoltech activities.
Yes, this is a way to address the “innovation” criteria. The industry can contribute funds, or other resources, or can be a no-cost participant in the effort. No research funds can be transferred to industrial organizations. However, in the future, there may be other funds available to support innovation in the research centers, which may be used for industrial support.
Innovation is the central theme of Skoltech, and all research programs must support innovation in some way. During the Proposers Conference, three models were presented: research with a consideration of use; the Innovation Support Program (ISP); and the Knowledge Integration Community (KIC). Stokes proposed research with a consideration of use and the citation is listed in Resources and Links. The Innovation Support Program is an expected extension of the current program, described here. The citation to Knowledge Integration Communities is listed in Resources and Links.
Yes, the call for proposal encourages universities and institutes to work together to build “significant research and educational capacity.” However, one institution should be the lead institution, and the others as sub-awards.
Yes, but one should be the lead institution, and others sub-awards.
The call for proposals says that research centers led by a non-Russian member must be led by a university. In exceptional circumstances, another arrangement could be proposed, but it would require a compelling explanation.
Each research center contains a lead non-Russian university, which can be a US university. The research center also contains a lead Russian institution, which can be either a university or a research institution (see Section IV Eligibility of the call for proposals).
Research centers may start as soon as the Skoltech director is appointed, but without any other Skoltech participants. There should be a plan for the recruitment of faculty at Skoltech, and/or the involvement of existing Skoltech faculty where appropriate.
Awardees will sign a three-party research collaboration agreement including Skoltech, the international institution and the Russian institution. Terms will be provided at the time awards are selected.
It is expected that there will be alignment of the partner institutions around goals and objective as well as evidence of close and synergistic collaboration.
Skoltech has not developed a specific procedure for disclosing background IP, but will negotiate this during contract discussions. Skoltech reserves the right to ask for disclosure of background IP.
Proposals should clearly explain how the research center might generate curricula and support the educational mission of Skoltech.
Travel amongst partner institutions is expected and should be described and justified.
Research centers are free to publish with no restrictions.
Research centers are encouraged to protect and develop intellectual property derived from both research and educational components. Intellectual property means all (a) patentable inventions, utility models, industrial designs (b) materials subject to copyright, (c) mask works, (d) tangible research property, including selection achievements (bred or synthesized plant, animal, or microorganism) and (e) trademarks, service marks and domain names.
IP created by employees of a non-Russian institution using the institution's own facilities during the course of this research will belong to that institution. IP created by employees of a non-Russian institution with significant use of another participating institution's facilities will be jointly owned by the non-Russian institution and the participating institution whose facilities were used. Visiting faculty, postdocs, and research assistants will be subject to the IP rules of that institution as applied to any regular visiting scholar. Ownership of IP created by Russian institutions may be assigned to Skoltech (negotiated on a case by case basis). Significant use by a Russian institution of another participating institution's facilities will result in the participating institution having a joint ownership interest.
Skoltech will share in all net royalties, milestone payments, and equity derived from the licensing of IP derived from a research center. The share will be prenegotiated during the contract discussions.
Skoltech seeks to maintain the principle that the inventor's share of the proceeds of a license should be consistent with the standard practice of each inventor's home Institution. In addition, that share should be assessed prior to the negotiated division between Skoltech and the Institution.
Recipients of the Skoltech research center awards will have the ability to re-budget funds appropriate to complete the approved work throughout the life of the award. However, in cases where there are significant changes in the scope of work, or in other project work, such that these changes needed to be approved by all center directors (see award contract), such changes should include a budget for how funds will be used for those new or revised projects.
Yes, rebudgeting of funds up to 10% of the total line item is permitted without approval from Skoltech. Changes in excess of 10% need to be approved with Skoltech with supporting justification.
Currently, Skoltech's policy does not permit no-cost extensions at the end of the award period.
Note: Skoltech supports the principle of no-cost extensions, so teams may propose such changes, and their proposal will be seriously considered, but no-cost extensions are not allowed without prior approval.
Skoltech uses a cost-reimbursement model based on eligible costs. Specifically, for a cost to be "eligible", it must be:
Purchased equipment is owned by Skoltech. Any leasing agreement for equipment is set up by the institution having the equipment.
Yes, indirect costs are allowed. Indirect costs shall represent an apportionment of the overall overheads of the organization linked to the project. These costs are not directly charged to the project but they are incurred in relationship to the direct costs of the project (indirectly), (e.g. facilities, heating, electricity, general administrative costs).
Skoltech research center funding will cover indirect costs (i.e. facilities and administrative costs, or overhead) using either of these two methods:
If the Russian government imposes VAT on the provision of the contract funds by Skoltech to a non-Russian institutions (as opposed to the expenditure of such funds), Skoltech will gross up the contract funds.
Each participating institution involved in a Skoltech research center is required to maintain financial records sufficient to audit research center expenses should it become necessary.
Each institution should practice the same accounting standard as they currently practice with every other research contract that they have.
Skoltech will reserve the right to have an audit performed at any time.
Skoltech will pay for any audit.