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Capsules

Use the Find My Capsule tool to find your department’s capsule.

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What are Capsules?

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Capsules are constituency assignment units formed by matching groupings of departments with a dedicated SR team made up of one SR staff member per business process.
  • Nine capsules in total.
  • Each capsule includes a dedicated Sponsored Research Officer (SRO) and Awards Management Associate (AMA) as well as members of the Contracts and Subcontracts teams.
  • The Business Systems and Operations team provides support to capsule teams across the entire sponsored project lifecycle.

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Capsule Goals

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FAQs

How do I find out which capsule my department is in, and who is in each role within the capsule?

Use the Find My Capsule tool. There’s also a job aid if you have questions about how to use the tool.

Who do I contact if I have a question about a proposal, change request, contract, etc.?

Use the Capsule Roles Across the Sponsored Research Lifecycle job aid to identify what business processes each member of the capsule executes across the sponsored research lifecycle. Keep in mind that capsules are not changing the business processes handled by each of SR’s Teams; capsules simply pair smaller sets of SR staff with the units they support. For a comprehensive look at SR’s organizational structure, visit Our Teams page to view SR’s organization chart and read more about team roles and responsibilities.

New Proposals: My PI is planning to submit a new proposal. How do I let my capsule know that it’s coming?

Create a proposal record in InfoEd with an accurate (sponsor) due date. If you have questions about setting up a proposal record in InfoEd, check out our InfoEd page to access a Getting Started Guide and Proposal Development FAQs.

Proposal Complexity: How does SR determine the complexity of a proposal when determining the level of review?

Given the diversity of Northwestern’s research portfolio, most proposals will be designated as regular or non-complex. Complex proposals may be identified by the anticipated complexity of the resultant award (e.g., multiple projects, cross-disciplinary collaborations with multiple institutions, etc.) and the level of internal coordination required for development.

Proposal Routing: To whom should I route proposals in InfoEd?

Once submitted, the system will route the action to the appropriate capsule team member. Use the Capsule Roles Across the Sponsored Research Lifecycle job aid to identify what business processes each member of the capsule executes across the sponsored research lifecycle.

Open Items: Will open items such as change requests and contracts under negotiation transition to my new capsule contact?

Transition of open items will occur on a case-by-case basis, with longstanding items likely to remain with the original (pre-capsule) assignee.

Signing Authority: Who is designated to sign off on proposals that require this? Does each capsule have its own signing official?

Sponsored Research staff have signatory delegation commensurate with office protocols and roles. Signatures are routed within Sponsored Research to the appropriate signatory when a signature is required that exceeds a staff member’s delegation.

How can I learn more about capsules?

Check out the December 14th CLEAR Meeting slides and on-demand webinar available on our Presentations page for more detailed information about Capsules.