Part III - Annual TRAC
Section D: All other costs
Chapter D.5 Estates
- The TRAC Support costs include estates costs (or premises costs).
- They are defined consistently for the annual TRAC process and for calculating
the estates charge-out rates. They are:
- premises expenditure (as defined in the HESA FSR – accessible from Annex
- the TRAC infrastructure adjustment; and
- initially, laboratory technicians and all equipment and research facilities
(these are then excluded from the estates costs used to calculate the estates
- They include all the costs of all support staff that relate to these areas.
The cost of capital employed should not be included (it
is an indirect cost).
- Further detail of what is and is not included in estates costs is given in Part
- When attributing estates costs in the annual TRAC process, the estates
costs of residences should be attributed to Other.
- Non-residential estates costs should be attributed to
central departments and to academic departments.
- Estates costs of academic departments should be attributed
to Teaching, Research and Other.
- All attributions should be based on the use of that space.
- No later than August 2007, the use of this space should take
into account at least four different types of space. A weighted cost per
square metre should be used to attribute the space used.
- The Research estates costs should be attributed to research
sponsor type; and the Teaching estates costs between PF and NPF Teaching.
- The estates costs of central departments should be identified,
and assigned to the central service department cost pools (and included in
the indirect cost rates). Where central service functions such as libraries,
registries, etc, are significantly devolved to academic departments, the
estates costs relating to these areas could either be included in the estates
total or be included in the indirect cost total.
- Robust methods should be used to attribute shared space
(e.g. laboratories used for both Research and Teaching, desk space used for
all of Other, Research and Teaching activities, shared seminar rooms) both
to academic departments and to activities. Shared space should be
attributed on a reasonable estimate of the proportion of use of that space,
not on the basis of ‘predominate use’, or a proxy based on other
dedicated space allocations. Office space could be attributed using academic
staff time data.
- The use of space by PGR students should be separately
identified on a fair and reasonable basis as part of this.
- When preparing their costs for the annual TRAC return to the funding councils,
institutions should ensure that the total Research estates
cost that have been attributed to the PGR activity category is the same as
that that could be calculated using FTE weightings of 0.5 and 0.8 for a research
student in non-laboratory and laboratory departments respectively (compared
to a weighting of 1.0 for an academic and research staff FTE working on Research).
This is irrespective of the cost drivers that have been used in the cost
allocation model when estates costs are allocated to Research.
- Estates costs for PGR students should not be extracted
separately from the estates costs of other Research activities before estates
charge-out rates are are calculated.
- Institutions should review their cost drivers for estates
costs so that they are in a position to inform a UK study of PGR weightings
- The requirement to identify four types of space and calculate a different
cost weighting for each is to ensure that departments are given the
right total costs for their mix of space. Weighted space costs
provide institutions with a better method of attributing space costs to departments,
and between T, R, and O in those departments.
- The four different space categories might be :
- low-cost space (e.g. barn, shed, some animal houses)
- desk or office
- serviced laboratory or facility (e.g. laboratory, computer laboratory)
- highly serviced laboratory or space (e.g. laboratory with air-conditioning,
or a major facility).
- If an institution does not have one of these types of space, they can
identify only three types of space.
- The £ per sq metre cost for each category should be calculated for
benchmarking purposes – see Part
II. The differentials would recognise the respective costs of building,
maintaining and servicing each category of space; and their respective utilisation
taking into account use by all activities.
- A step by step approach to the attribution of estates costs is available
in Annex 12 . A worked example is available
in Annex 13.
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