Grants Versus Contracts

What's the difference?

Although the differences between contracts and grants are becoming less defined, the following criteria may help you determine what kind of agreement is required.

You likely have a grant if:

  • there is no funding for faculty or co-applicants’ time
  • the funding is not tied to specific outcomes. Payments are given in advance.
  • there is no transfer of results to the sponsor. Reporting may still be required.
  • any intellectual property would follow Dalhousie’s practices
  • there is no detailed budget required by the sponsor

You require a contract if:

  • there is a clear statement of work with expected outcomes and deliverables
  • there is a set timeframe for the work
  • there are discussions on confidentiality, intellectual property ownership, and/or liability
  • there are terms for acceptance or termination of the project
  • there is a set budget and payment schedule based on deliverables

Still not sure? Contact your facilitator or the ORS legal advisor for help.