Budget Tools

Proposal Budget Basics

Proposals must include a budget, a detailed breakdown of the financial support requested from the sponsoring agency. Even if the Sponsor only requires total project costs a detailed budget in required internally in order to ensure that the projected total is sufficient for the support the project requires.

Budget Builders

Use the current versions of the Excel budget builder files below when preparing your proposal budgets (Note macros must be enabled).

The budget should reflect the best estimate of the costs requested to conduct the work outlined in other sections of the proposal. Because proposal budgets are only estimates of what the project will cost in the future, and rates and costs do vary over time, the principal investigator (PI) should be aware that future budget adjustments may be necessary during the life of the award, and such adjustments may require sponsor approval obtained through OSP.

This is particularly true for proposals being submitted to and awards funded by international sponsors. A long-term international agreement may present a challenge when it comes to dealing with the likely fluctuations in the currencies of the two partners. The value of any currency can shift dramatically over time due to a variety of reasons. Between the time that the negotiated agreement is signed and payments are exchanged, one side may be receiving less money, or paying more than they anticipated.

The PI therefore should work with OSP to build a budget that considers the likelihood of future changes in rates and conditions. The PI should monitor project costs and make internal budget adjustments (with sponsor approval if required) to stay within the project budget approved by the sponsor. Note: If a funding deficit results from (a) international currency fluctuations or (b) project expenditures exceeding the amount of the award, the PI may wish to work through OSP to request additional funding from the sponsor. If the sponsor does not provide additional funding, any deficit that results will be cleared by the campus deficit reduction policy.