Columbia University is one of the world's most important centers of research and at the same time a distinctive and distinguished learning environment for undergraduates and graduate students in many scholarly and professional fields. The University recognizes the importance of its location in New York City and seeks to link its research and teaching to the vast resources of a great metropolis. It seeks to attract a diverse and international faculty and student body, to support research and teaching on global issues, and to create academic relationships with many countries and regions. It expects all areas of the university to advance knowledge and learning at the highest level and to convey the products of its efforts to the world. Columbia is one of the top academic and research institutions in the world, conducting path breaking research in medicine, science, the arts, and the humanities. It includes three undergraduate schools, thirteen graduate and professional schools, and a school of continuing education. We are committed to attracting and retaining the best and brightest in the workforce to support our mission of excellence in higher education and research.
POSITION DESCRIPTION: Reporting to the Controller, the Associate Vice President, Research Policy & Indirect Cost oversees the following research financial activities for the University: indirect cost models and rate proposal; cost reporting; Uniform Guidance reporting; audit support; recharge centers; subrecipient monitoring; space monitoring; effort reporting. The Associate Vice President is a senior advisor and key member of the Controller’s leadership team, and is responsible for strategically leading a team of 5 to support the needs of the University in the areas of research policy and indirect cost.
Responsible for the development and monitoring of indirect cost models; develops work plans for the periodic indirect cost proposal; executes the indirect cost proposal, including coordinating with other University units and external consultants, where applicable; updates the Controller on work plan progress and continually seeks ways to improve the rate proposal process; responsible for developing other governmental recovery rates including fringe, graduate research assistant tuition rates, administrative fees, and other rates charged to sponsored projects; serve as key liaison and lead rate negotiator with relevant government agencies.
Uniform Guidance & Audit Support
Responsible for preparing the annual Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards (SEFA) and related data collection form for the annual audit required under the Office of Management and Budget’s Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (Uniform Guidance); resolves issues arising from the audit; seeks out and leads process improvement initiatives related to the annual report filing; supports audits of sponsored programs, including data collection, research, formulation of responses, and development of any necessary corrective action plans.
Oversees the annual re-certification of service centers and recharge centers used to control allowable charges on services or products used principally within the University community; works with the appropriate department to review and approve requests for new service centers, ensures research activities that involve a service/recharge center are compliant with University policy and Uniform Guidance.
Oversees the maintenance of the subrecipient financial database and review of all Subrecipient Certification and Financial Status Questionnaires and supporting documentation; coordinates with Sponsored Projects Administration (SPA) to perform risk assessments for new subrecipients.
Oversees and maintains the University’s space survey for purposes of indirect cost rate development, provides training to departmental representatives who perform the space survey; reviews the adequacy of the University’s space functionalization data (the basis for allocating building and equipment depreciation and overhead and maintenance costs to research). Coordinates the detail review of the space survey with School and department leadership.
Oversees compliance with effort reporting requirements University-wide, which includes updating policy and training materials, delivering training to effort coordinators across the University, managing the relationship with the effort reporting tool vendor, coordinating with the vendor for product enhancements, overseeing upgrades to the tool, and monitoring annual certification of over 8,000 effort reports as required by University policy. The Associate Vice President will work closely with key business partners to support the needs of the University in the areas of research policy and indirect cost, including the Vice President for Financial Operations & Compliance, the Executive Director for Sponsored Projects Finance, the Associate Vice President for Research Administration, and the Associate Vice President for Research Compliance as well as external partners including representatives from various governmental agencies.