Persuasive budgets are realistic and accurate. The Grants Office strongly recommends consulting our office, as well as Susan Benson, Grant and Cash Manager (x5990) in the Business Office, for assistance with budget preparation. The Business Office, in consultation with the Office of the Provost, has developed a helpful template for creating a proposal budget. [You’ll find the “Research Grant Proposed Budget” template on the Business office forms page, under the heading Government and Foundation Grant Forms.]
In general, budgets, including especially those included with proposals to federal agencies, have two parts:
- Direct Costs include salaries, wages, and stipends for you or any other personnel associated with or working on your project; equipment and maintenance; supplies; payment for participation, honoraria, or colloquia fees; travel; communications (telephone, fax, photocopying, and postage); and fringe benefits.
- Indirect Costs are calculated as a percentage of total salaries and stipends. Indirect costs compensate for such expenses as building maintenance for your project; the cost of books, journals, periodicals, or multimedia materials collected and stored for your project; administrative costs; and, in rare instances, fringe benefits on salaries and wages. The College has a negotiated rate for indirect costs; consult with the Grants Office (x4046) or Susan Benson, Grant and Cash Manager (x5990) in the Business Office for more information.
When compiling a budget, assess your needs carefully.
- Will you want release time or a summer salary? Will you be on leave?
- What staffing needs will you have? Will your staff be professional? Administrative? Students? Consultants?
- Will you need new equipment? Will an equipment purchase require pricing or bidding? Will the equipment have to be installed? Will it require special accommodations by the College? Does it have to be maintained or serviced?
- Will your project use office supplies? Will you need to purchase a specialized computer, or adjust internet connectivity in any way? Do you plan to distribute questionnaires, or compensate research-study participants? How much project-specific postage or products will you need?
- Will you or anyone on the project travel? Will the travel be local, regional, national, or international?