Competitive Industrial Proposals are rare.
When an industrial sponsor has issued a competitive RFP, the web site or other communication describing the RFP usually provides forms (paper or web-based) on which the proposal and budget must be prepared, a contract that must be pre-approved by MIT before the proposal is submitted, and a letter, to be submitted with the proposal, that says that MIT accepts the terms of the contract.
In these cases, as soon as anyone in OSP receives notification from a PI or DLC of intent to submit a proposal to the competitive RFP program, the Contract Administrator should notify the Industry Liaison of the competitive RFP so he can promptly initiate contract review and discussion of any issues with the sponsor. The Industry Liaison will quickly notify prospective proposers of any issues with the contract that could prevent MIT from submitting proposals, and will negotiate changes to the contract, if possible, to mitigate those issues. If MIT cannot accept the contract, the Industry Liaison will notify the PI’s interested in proposing to the competitive RFP program, plus OSP’s Grant and Contract Administrators, why MIT will not be able to participate in the competitive RFP program. If MIT can accept the contract, then the submission process proceeds as follows:
- The PI and DLC administrator should prepare the proposal and budget with the content and in the format required by the RFP, and route the final proposal through MIT approvals to the OSP Contract Administrator. The five-day OSP proposal review requirement applies.
- OSP will review and approve the proposal if it meets MIT requirements and the Industry Liaison will sign the contract acceptance letter that must be accompany the proposal.
- The Contract Administrator will return electronic copies of the approved final proposal and the contract acceptance letter to the PI, who will then submit the proposal to the sponsor by the deadline, as instructed by the RFP instructions.
Some competitive industrial RFPs require submission of a pre-proposal or white paper as a first stage, which is evaluated by the sponsor before finalists are invited to submit complete proposals.
- In these cases, OSP will usually allow PIs to submit the pre-proposals/white papers directly without formal approvals, unless the pre-proposal/white paper must be accompanied by an MIT-signed agreement or contract acceptance letter (as occurs with HP and Samsung competitive RFP programs).
- Where the pre-proposal/white paper does not require a signed agreement or contract acceptance letter, the Contract Administrator will request a copy of the pre-proposal/white paper for the OSP file as a reference in case the PI is later invited to submit a final proposal.
- At that same time, the Contract Administrator will notify the Industry Liaison of the pre-proposal/white paper submission so the Liaison can preview the contractual requirements of the competitive RFP.