Indirect Cost Policy

W.K. Kellogg Foundation recognizes that applicants may have overhead costs that are not directly attributable to the proposed project but are necessary to carry out the proposed project. W.K. Kellogg Foundation will consider paying for these indirect costs up to a maximum of twenty-nine percent (29%) of direct project or activity costs within the $20 million award limit. The following offers general guidelines. Should you be named a Finalist, indirect costs will be further defined and negotiated with the Competition Sponsor.


Direct Costs: Direct costs are those costs that can be identified with and are tracked to a particular program or project, such as salaries for project staff and materials required for the project. Direct costs would not be incurred if not for the existence of the program or project being funded.

Indirect Costs: Indirect costs are the organization’s operating costs for activities or services that benefit more than one project or activity and may include items, such as facilities costs, equipment, and information services, and are generally an allocation or percentage of organization-wide expenses. While these costs are not directly attributable to the specific proposed project and while it is often difficult to determine how much is associated with all of the organization’s distinct projects, indirect costs are real and necessary to carry out the work.

Certain costs may be classified as either direct costs or indirect costs depending on the nature of the activity and the nature of the expense. Expenses that are incurred solely for the project and can be specifically attributed to the project should be considered direct costs. Costs normally considered indirect should not be separately included as direct costs.

Please note that W.K. Kellogg Foundation may require additional information to determine if a proposed expense is a direct or indirect cost should you be named a finalist.