Renewal of Tri-Agency Financial Information

Changes to the Use and Management of Tri-Agency Funds: A Principles-Based Approach

The Tri-Agencies (CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC) have launched an initiative to update the financial administration requirements of their grants. By moving to a principles-based approach the goal is to be less prescriptive, promote efficiencies and leverage existing institutional policies and controls to ensure the appropriate accountability and use of grant funds.  Administering institutions will use the new Financial Administration Guide (draft) which is based on 4 Principles and 5 Directives, and will also apply their own policies and procedures for managing grant funds.

** Effective February 1, 2019 Western will be using the new draft Guide which can be found under the Research Finance > Tri-Agency section on the Financial Services Training and Reference Material page.


The Tri-Agencies visited Western October 9th and 10th to consult with our grant recipients and administrators, and to provide more details related to this initiative. The full presentation can be found under the Research Finance > Tri-Agency section on the Financial Services Training and Reference Material page.

Western University is one of 12 institutions from across the country participating in the pilot phase of this initiative.  Since November Research Finance has been hard at work reviewing and providing feedback on the new Guide, reviewing Western’s policies to determine if updates are needed, and determining if our monitoring practices require modifications.  


While the method of adjudicating expense eligibility is changing from a prescribed list to the application of four principles and our institutional policies, the actual expenses that are considered eligible will not materially change.  While it is still very early, our preliminary assessment of these changes is that there will be negligible change to how Western researchers utilize their funds and how administrators provide support.  We expect to address a few distinct items with specified documentation, policy revisions, training and/or other support as appropriate.    


Research Finance will continue to provide up to date information on this initiative on this webpage. 

More information can also be found on the government website at:

PDF symbol Renewal Summary - Tri-Agency Financial Administration 


Please contact Research Finance at should you have any questions or if you would like to provide feedback.