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Administrative matters

Ownership of items purchased with PromoScience funds

All equipment and material purchased with PromoScience grant funds belong to the organization and not to the principal applicant, unless NSERC agrees otherwise in writing, or unless doing so would be contrary to a legislated requirement. As custodian, the organization is responsible for ensuring that the equipment is used for promoting science and engineering.

NSERC expects that the equipment will be made available to other organizations involved in science promotion when not in use by the organization that received the PromoScience grant. Fees may be charged to these users to recover direct costs incurred.

If NSERC-funded equipment is later sold, proceeds from the sale belong to the organization, but should be used for promotional purposes.

For the organization’s responsibilities with respect to equipment and facilities, consult Section 3.8: Ownership of Equipment and Facilities of the This link will take you to another Web site Agreement on the Administration of Agency Grants and Awards by Research Institutions (if applicable).


PromoScience grants are awarded to the organization and not to the principal applicant. NSERC must be notified immediately of any changes in the responsibility of administering the grant. PromoScience grants are not transferable from one organization to another, nor can funds from one PromoScience grant be transferred to another.

Termination of a grant

When an organization ceases to exist or becomes unable to carry out the activities for which the grant was awarded, the principal applicant must immediately inform NSERC's Finance division and submit the following documents:

  • the organization’s statement of account as of the date requested by NSERC
  • a detailed list of outstanding commitments made by the organization prior to termination

The organization may not authorize any new commitments or expenditures from the grant account after the date of termination, or other date indicated by NSERC.

NSERC may authorize the payment of outstanding commitments or proposed phase-out expenditures out of the residual funds.

The allowed phase-out period will be determined by NSERC. A standard phase-out period is three to six months.

If NSERC terminates a PromoScience grant, the organization will be notified by a finance officer or the PromoScience program officer.

Deferral of instalment payments

Government policy states that NSERC cannot pay instalments in advance of need; it can provide funds only to correspond with the cash flow requirements to conduct program delivery. If the organization has a build-up of funds in the PromoScience account and believes that the scheduled instalment for the next financial year will not be needed at that time, the grantee should request a deferral of the next instalment from NSERC.

Deferring an instalment extends the life of the grant, allows the organization to re-organize its activities and postpones the renewal or re-application date by one or two years. The total of all deferral periods cannot exceed two years. The original grant end date will be adjusted accordingly.

Deferring an instalment does not adversely affect the review of the organization's next application, but rather demonstrates good fiscal management of its funds and provides the opportunity for NSERC to fund other organizations that might otherwise not have been awarded funding.

NSERC may defer, or even hold back, an organization’s next instalment if, in the sole discretion of NSERC, it is judged that the organization’s build-up of funds has not been properly justified and that the need for funds has not been demonstrated.

For more information about deferrals and hold-backs, contact the Finance and Awards Administration division at NSERC by email at

Residual balances

All grants paid are deemed to have a primary holder (the principal applicant), whose name appears on the award notice.

All grants that have not been extended, or that have been terminated, may contain residual balances of funds allocated in prior years and/or issued in the current fiscal year. NSERC will request a reimbursement in the case when no future payments are scheduled for any current-year funds not required for the purpose for which they were granted.