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Home No. 14: Use eRA Commons Effectively

Jun 22

No. 14: Use eRA Commons Effectively

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Use eRA Commons Effectively

Reader question: I’m writing my first grant, and I understand that my institution has to register an eRA (electronic Research Administration) Commons account for me. What is this, and what can I do to make it work for me effectively?

Expert Comments:

eRA Commons is an electronic network of NIH-sponsored systems that receives and processes your grant application. Seek out a representative from your department or someone in your central grants office to get you registered with eRA Commons. NIH recommends that you register at least one month before you plan to submit your application.

You’ll have to provide your name, a user id and your Social Security number. Also, list any grants that you may be a part of. The account will associate the existing grant information with the profile you’re creating.

Once your institution creates your account as the PI, you are responsible for completing the grant process via eRA Commons. Or you may want to delegate authority to others in your office who can assist with your proposal or other actions in the system. Your delegates can use xTrain, which is a part of eRA Commons that permits them to act on your behalf. For example, they can add trainees to a training grant or terminate their appointments.

Delegates can also view warnings and errors associated with your application. They will be able to see information about your application that is similar to that of a signing official, but they cannot access confidential information.

Keep in mind, however, that you can designate individuals as assistants only if they are already registered in eRA Commons.

For more information on how to add an assistant and delegate authority in eRA Commons, go to http://grants.nih.gov/grants/planning_application.htm#registering.

Expert comments by Mike Ludwick, Associate Director of Grants and Contracts at the University of Virginia.

Comments (1)
written by Another newbie, June 22, 2011
I recently used eRA Commons for the first time and found it pretty easy to navigate. And when I ran into an issue, my Office of Sponsored Research was there to help, and we got things straightened out quickly.

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