Research Inventory System

Web based application for requesting, routing, and issuing various research related agreements.

Log In to Research Inventory System (RIS)

About RIS

What is RIS?

While PennERA is the system of record for projects involving sponsored research at the University, the Research Inventory System (RIS) is the system for agreements that don’t typically involve funding (i.e. Material Transfer Agreements and Collaboration Agreements) or the funding is leaving the University (i.e. Subawards).

Agreement Types

The following chart explains different types of agreements handled through RIS.

Agreement TypePurpose of AgreementWhen is it UsedWhere is it requested?
MTAResearch materials (including software and biomaterials)When sending university-owned material to an outside party, or when receiving material from an outside party requiring an agreementMTA/NMA module
DUA/DTUAData (full PHI, limited data set (LDS), or de-identified)When sending or receiving data which must be protectedMTA/NMA module
Collaborative Research Agreement (CRA)The roles and responsibilities of parties involved in un-funded research activities. May also include data, materials, and Confidential InformationWhen two or more parties wish to engage in research activities without a funding agreementMTA/NMA module
CDA/NDAConfidential / proprietary informationWhen sharing information for a specific purpose which is not to be shared outside of the scope of that purposeMTA/NMA module
Fee-for-ServiceProvision of services for the benefit of the pass-through entity in exchange for fundsWhen a service is being provided for research activities without significant intellectual input into that researchFee-for-Service module (if Penn is doing the work); Subaward module (if Penn is paying for the work)
Equipment Loan AgreementPhysical transfer of tangible research equipment from one entity to anotherWhen sending or receiving tangible equipment to an Outside Party for testing and evaluation and/or instructional purposes.MTA/NMA module
Subaward (outgoing)Transfer of sponsored research funds, passing through Penn, for completion of a portion of an approved scope of workWhen a 5-fund will be used to fund an outside party’s collaboration on a sponsored projectSubaward module

In addition to the above agreement types, RIS is also used for the University’s Stem Cell Registry and for requesting Cadaver and Recognizable Human Body Parts, which are both managed outside of the Office of Research Services.

Once an agreement is entered into RIS it will be assigned to a negotiator in the appropriate University office:

  • If an external collaborator, agreement is assigned to a Penn negotiator
  • If a non-profit partner, agreement is assigned to ORS
  • If a non-clinical commercial/industry partner, agreement is assigned to the Penn Center for Innovation
  • If a clinical commercial/industry partner, agreement is assigned to the clinical trial contracting unit.

Questions & Support

Please send MTA/NMA questions or comments to, stem cell registry questions or comments to, and cadaver/recognizable body parts questions or comments to, and subaward questions or comments to Please do not include confidential information in your e-mail.