Principal Investigator’s Handbook

The Principal Investigator (PI) must ensure that all aspects of a research project are conducted responsibly and in accordance with compliance obligations. Some compliance obligations are internally mandated (e.g., Waterloo policies, guidelines or processes), whereas others are externally mandated (e.g., funders’ requirements or legal requirements). For many PIs, the growth of mandated compliance requirements in today’s highly regulated research environment can be confusing and opaque.

This PI Handbook has been developed by the Office of Research as a resource to enable researchers to identify and execute their responsibilities. This succinct, transparent, and navigable repository enables PIs to identify and fulfil requirements specific to their research project.

The repository is organized into five sections:

In each section, obligations are categorized as either mandatory (must do) or best practice (optional). Critical extracts from relevant policies, procedures, and guidelines are provided with links to the source document(s), should more detail be required. Feel free to contact the staff identified; they will be pleased to help you clarify your obligations in light of the specifics of your research project.