Electronic Research Administration (ERA) is the general term applied to describe a series of new trends associated with: the identification of new funding opportunities; the submission of grant applications; the review of grant proposals; and the management of subsequent grant and contract awards - all conducted via the Internet. ERA is rapidly taking the place of traditional means of correspondence in the research community. Most agencies that currently use ERA software require an investigator to register through their home institution.
Grants.Gov is the name given the Federal government's primary initiative in electronic research administration. Eventually, all grant proposals to Federal agencies must be submitted via Grants.Gov.
For Grants.Gov submissions, the Office of Sponsored Projects and Research (OSPR) must submit all proposals. As a principal investigator (PIs), you do NOT need to create a Grants.Gov account but will need to download the application package. Please contact SPO early in the proposal process. Proper planning is essential as delays and technical difficulties could result in a missed submission deadline.
If the proposal guidelines require electronic submission of any kind, please contact SPO (ext. 1126) as soon as possible. Most Federal agencies have electronic systems for managing proposal submissions and awards (eRA Commons(NIH),FastLane(NSF),HRSA EHB(Electronic Handbook), etc.). In many of these systems, principal investigators (PIs) must have a user account in addition to the institutional account. The creation of accounts may take several days and require multiple steps. Please plan accordingly.
Non-federal agencies may also use electronic systems or methods for proposal submission. The key in any case is to notify OPSR as early as possible. If you are considering submitting a proposal requiring electronic submission, let us know so we can assist you in the process.