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Guide Tool: Developing a Project Charter

A project charter outlines the expectations for how a project team, advisory group and other participants will work together. By clarifying the time commitment and decision-making process, teams can avoid misunderstandings and potential conflicts down the road.

Discussing a draft charter can help identify questions and clarify expectations among the group early in the project. Once initial edits have been included, a charter can serve as a “living document” and reference for the group that is updated when needed. 

This document outlines a set of questions to consider early in the project to clarify roles and responsibilities for a project advisory group. The second section of this document includes a template for an advisory group charter that has been used by several NERRS Science Collaborative projects.  The questions and template could be modified for use with a large project team as well.

How to access resources:  
Guide resources are provided as open-view Google Docs to promote access. Open the document, then make a copy or download the resource in your preferred format (File > Download).


This tool is part of an online Guide to Collaborative Science and was developed by the National Estuarine Research Reserve System’s Science Collaborative Program.

Location: Enhance Collaboration > Plan Timelines and Team Roles