University of Southern California

Research

PI/Key Person Change

Naming a new PI to lead a funded project almost always requires the prior approval of the sponsor. Depending on the sponsor and the terms and conditions of the award, changes to other Key Personnel may also require prior sponsor approval. Individual awards should be reviewed for specific guidance, but at a minimum all PI changes must be routed through DCG regardless of sponsor requirements.

Documentation Required – All requests must include: (1) a justification related to the project, including any proposed changes in scope; (2) the effective date of the proposed change; (3) any budget changes resulting from the proposed change; (4) a biographical sketch of the new PI or Key Person, if DCG is required to submit it to the sponsor; (5) other sources of support of any new individuals proposed [federal projects only]; and (6) sponsor approval [non-federal projects only].

Approvals Required – (1) current Principal Investigator; (2) the proposed new Principal Investigator, if changing; Dept. Chair/Unit Head or designee; and (3) Dept. Chair/Unit Head or designee; and (4) Dean/Director or designee, if requesting a new PI, i.e., a change to a non-PI Key Person does not need Dean/Director approval. Sponsor approval is almost always required; please consult the award terms and conditions.