Research overhead and indirect costs of research effectively mean the same thing and are used interchangeably. Indirect costs of research are borne by the institution and benefit and support research. The costs cannot easily be attributed directly to a specific research project, but they are necessary for the conduct of research. They include such items as faculty time, the provision of space and its maintenance and servicing (utilities), the use and maintenance of equipment, a proportionate share of other costs such as insurance and legal services, and services provided by the University's support staff, e.g., Research Services, Financial Services Division, Human Resources Division, Purchasing Services, Facilities Management Division, Auxiliary Services, Office of the Registrar, Library.
The University of Saskatchewan seeks to recover indirect costs on research, funded through both grant and contract agreements, according to its approved Administration of Research Overheads policy. Principal Investigators are required to budget overhead in applications for research funding using the rates appropriate to the funding mechanism as per the approved Standard Overhead Rate and Guideline Schedule and the sponsor's guidelines.