The increased funding success of researchers at UBC and affiliated teaching hospitals puts an increased demand on the overall research infrastructure.
For research activities to be sustainable, and for researchers to receive the necessary support from their faculties, departments and central administration, it is imperative that the full cost of research is recovered.
Full Cost of Research = Direct Costs + Indirect Costs
Direct costs are those that are directly attributable to an individual research project.
Indirect costs of research are real, ongoing, necessary operating expenses that support research but cannot be wholly attributed to any one research project. Many of the indirect costs are incurred whether or not research funding applications or proposals are successful.
All funded research grants, contracts and agreements are required to include indirect cost recovery.
As of May 1, 2015, the required indirect cost recovery rate for all new research projects is:
- 25% of all direct costs for all non-industry funding (government and non-profits)
- 40% of all direct costs on industry funding
All industry projects initiated prior to May 1, 2015 may continue to recover indirect costs at a rate of 25%.
The only exceptions to this rate are:
- Funds from any of the Tri-Council funding agencies (UBC recovers indirect costs for Tri-Council funds through the federal Research Support Fund - previously the Federal Indirect Costs Program). The only exception is the SSHRC-administered Tri-Agency New Frontiers in Research Fund. Applicants to this fund should contact ORS about building indirect cost recovery into their application.
- Grant funds received under the following conditions:
The grant application form clearly states that a different indirect costs recovery rate applies to all applicants; or
The sponsor's indirect cost recovery rate can be verified (by UILO or ORS, as the case may be), through publicly-available documents.
If any of these conditions are met, UBC will accept the posted rate. The Indirect Costs of Research Table of Verified Rates lists many of the verified exceptions to the standard UBC rate.
After May 1, 2015, all discretionary powers for the recovery rate of indirect costs (for projects not covered by the standard or published verified rates) rests with the deans of the faculties and not with the Vice President Research & International Office.
Researchers are responsible for:
- Including the proper indirect cost recovery in project budgets. The indirect costs should be built into each budget item, to avoid unnecessary confusion.
- Indicating the amount of indirect costs on the Research Project Information Form that must accompany all research project applications and proposals.
Indirect costs will be automatically deducted from research accounts at the standard rate (or other verified rate) as expenses are incurred.
For questions pertaining to donations for research, please contact the Faculty Development Team for guidance and to ensure that the indirect costs of research are included in the budgeting.
Recovered indirect costs are distributed in the following ways:
For Health Authority (hospital sites):
For projects carried out at Health Authority (UBC affiliated teaching hospital) sites, including Vancouver Coastal Health facilities located at the Point Grey campus, recovered indirect costs are generally shared as follows:
- Clinical Trials: UBC – 20%, Hospital – 80%
- Non-clinical Research: UBC – 33%, Hospital – 67%
- Other Projects (non-Tri Council): UBC – 50%, Hospital – 50%
UBC distribution of indirect costs:
UBC's share of recovered indirect costs is distributed following any split with affiliated teaching hospitals as outlined above.
There are two changes to the distribution of recovered indirect costs for new projects, starting May 1, 2015:
- An increase in the share being returned to faculties from 50% to 75%.
- The ability for approved centres and institutes to receive a share of recovered indirect costs.
Where there is no involvement of an approved centre or institute, the new distribution will be:
- 25% to Central Services (General Purpose Operating Fund)
- 75% to the relevant Faculty Dean
Where the research is primarily located at an approved centre or institute:
- 25% to Central Services (General Purpose Operating Fund)
- 25% to the relevant faculty dean
- 50% to the eligible centre or institute
Indirect costs recovered through the Research Support Fund (previously the Federal Indirect Costs Program), which form a core component of UBC’s budget, are distributed in a different manner and are excluded from these changes to recovered indirect costs.
The current list of approved centres and institutes is as follows:
Advanced Materials and Process Engineering Laboratory (AMPEL)
BC Centre on Substance Use (BCCSU)
BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute (BCCHRI)
Biodiversity Research Centre
Biomedical Research Centre
Centre for Advanced Wood Processing (CAWP)
Centre for Applied Ethics
Centre for Blood Research (CBR)
Centre for Brain Health (CBH)
Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Management
Centre for Excellence in Indigenous Health (CEIH)
Centre for Health Education Scholarship (CHES)
Centre for Health Evaluation & Outcome Sciences (CHEOS)
Centre for Health Services & Policy Research (CHSPR)
Centre for Hip Health & Mobility
Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability (CIRS)
Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics (CMMT)
Centre for Sustainable Food Systems (CSFS)
Clean Energy Research Centre (CERC)
Data Science Institute
Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP)
Institute for Applied Mathematics
Institute for Computing, Information and Cognitive Systems (ICICS)
Institute for Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Prevention
Institute for Mental Health (IMH)
International Collaboration on Repair Discoveries (ICORD)
James Hogg Research Centre
Life Sciences Institute (LSI)
Materials and Manufacturing Research Institute (MMRI)
Providence Health Care Research Institute (PHCRI)
Pulp and Paper Centre (PPC)
Quantum Matter Institute (QMI)
UBC Centre for Disease Control (UBC-CDC)
Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute (VCHRI)
Women’s Health Research Centre