In order to submit a proposal or serve as principal investigator (PI) on an award, investigators must have PI status.
Tenure-track faculty members automatically have PI status; PI status can be granted to academic staff in three ways:
- One-time limited PI status: Approved by schools/colleges/institutes on a proposal-by-proposal basis
- Blanket limited PI status: Approved by schools/colleges/institutes for a specified time period (not used at *SMPH – see below).
- Permanent PI status: Granted by the Graduate School, with prior approval from the SMPH Deans Office (contact Christy Schulz, 608) 265-3386), to individuals with strong research records who meet specific eligibility criteria
Limited PI status
One-time limited PI status
To serve as PI on a specific proposal/project, researchers may request one-time limited PI status:
- Complete a request for limited PI status form for the proposal.
- Upload the completed request form AND a current CV as attachments to the WISPER record for the proposal.
- Once the WISPER record is signed by SMPH, requests are approved. The individual is eligible to serve as PI.
Blanket limited PI status
*SMPH does not use or track Blanket Limited PI status. If a Limited PI status has been included on a previous WISPER record, and the Chair continues to APPROVE subsequent submission, SMPH will process.
To gain PI status for a specified period of time (1-3 years), academic staff may request blanket limited PI status:
- Complete a request for blanket limited PI status form
- Submit a copy of the form AND a current CV to your department chair/director.
- Once approved by your department, the form should be attached to the WISPER record.
- When the Dean’s Office signs off on WISPER, it is approved for the designated time period.
- When submitting proposals, include information in the comments tab of each WISPER record indicating that the PI is approved for blanket status and state the end date of the current approval.
Permanent PI status
Experienced academic staff members with very strong research records may be eligible to apply for Permanent PI Status, which must first be approved by the SMPH Deans Office (contact Christy Schulz, 608 265-3386).
Staff members granted permanent PI status do not need to request permission to serve as PI each time a proposal is submitted. In addition, permanent PIs are eligible to apply for Graduate School Research Committee funds through its Fall Competition.
For complete information on applying for permanent PI status, see the Graduate School’s Permanent Principal Investigator Status Policy page.
Emeritus/emerita status is an honorary designation conferred upon retirees to recognize their contributions and accomplishments over their university careers. It is available to academic staff, classified staff and faculty.
SMPH policy requires that to serve as a principal investigator (PI) one must commit a minimum of 1 percent effort to the project. While emeritus status professors generally do not have a paid appointment, there are some that are rehired at some percentage.
If you are submitting a proposal through the WISPER system and have an emeritus designation for someone you must include one of the following:
- A note on the WISPER record that the person has a paid emeritus appointment.
- Attach a signed note, on department letterhead, that the emeritus appointment will be given a paid appointment equal to the percent effort committed on the proposal.
PI Status: Information, forms and resources from the UW Graduate School
For more information or assistance with PI status, contact your department research administrator or the SMPH Research Division:Christy Schulz, (608) 265-3386.