On Grants.gov, we obviously have government grants, but you will also find a lot of “cooperative agreements” while searching for funding opportunities. This is because cooperative agreements and grants are very similar, but with one big distinction.
Both cooperative agreements and grants are “a legal instrument of financial assistance between a Federal awarding agency or pass-through entity and a non-Federal entity” as defined in the OMB Uniform Guidance (§200.24 for cooperative agreement and §200.51 for grant agreement).
Both cooperative agreements and grants “transfer anything of value from the Federal awarding agency or pass-through entity to the non-Federal entity to carry out a public purpose.”
So, What’s the One Big Distinction?