Getting Started

Are you eligible to be a Principal Investigator?

Eligibility to act as a principal investigator (PI) or co-principal investigator (Co-PI) on externally-funded projects is a privilege limited to members of the Academic Council and to the MCL faculty. This policy limitation is in place because principal investigators are responsible for determining the intellectual direction of the research and scholarship, and for the training of graduate students. The designation of "PI" or "Co-PI" for any member of the Academic Staff, or other individual who is not a member of the University's Academic Council or MCL faculty, requires specific approval by the relevant department chair, school dean and, in some cases, the Dean of Research.

Are there exceptions?

Yes! Most exceptions for trainees and junior staff are granted with a career development PI waiver

Are you trained?

Principal Investigators Training is mandatory for all PIs:

Start on the Principal Investigator Responsibilities web page. You need to read and certify that you understand your responsibilites and the Stanford policies associated with being a PI. In addition, if your research invloves human subjects, you and your research team will need Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval and training. If you will be working with protected health information (PHI) you must complete the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA) training. you have sufficient resources and capacity to conduct research?

See the Education and Training section of this guide for more details on the training and education available to help get PIs and research teams up and running.

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