Purchase Goods or Services while Abroad
The processes for procuring goods and services by Columbia departments for operations outside the U.S. will involve additional considerations and require approval processes that can meet the demands of Columbia policy and host country circumstances. Specifically, units should establish procedures, if not already defined, that clearly delineate who within the department will have authority for the different steps of the procurement cycle and how property and equipment will be managed in the host country. It is important to note that approval by Central Procurement and/or the Office of the General Counsel is required prior to formalizing any such procurement procedures.
The University developed guidelines in order to address how international entities established by Columbia University should coordinate with central and departmental administrations when undertaking certain types of transactions and activities.
See the Guidelines on Host Country Transaction Authority for additional details.
These guidelines are general and high-level, and more specific procedures may be set forth in a department’s Standard Operating Procedures manual. If there is a conflict between these guidelines and the department’s Standard Operating Procedures manual, the manual will supersede and govern.
Compliance with these guidelines is important for helping achieve uniformity, quality, effectiveness, and financial integrity of operations in international programs supported by Columbia University. These guidelines also help ensure that the entity’s operations comply with laws and regulations of the host country and the U.S. government, as well as the requirements of grants and contributions benefiting the entity.
International programs must adopt Columbia University’s policies and standards of practice for moveable equipment (also referred to as capital equipment, property, or capital assets). These include procedures and guidelines that address the four components of the equipment lifecycle (acquisition, capitalization, use and maintenance, and disposal).
For additional details, refer to the Capital Assets, Buildings, and Equipment section of Accounting Operations.
Forms and Documents
See the Guidelines on Host Country Transaction Authority for additional details on coordinating with central and departmental administrations when undertaking certain types of transactions and activities.
Refer to the Capital Assets, Buildings, and Equipment section of Accounting Operations Columbia University’s policies and standards of practice for moveable equipment purchases.