An Updated Look at Applications Submitted During the Pandemic

June 1, 2021

In a previous post, we looked at the gender distribution of designated principal investigators (PI’s) of R01 and RPG applications submitted before and after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Here we look at NIH R01 and RPG application patterns for January 1 through April 8 over the past 6 years; these applications patterns may well reflect longer-term pandemic effects.

Updated NIH-wide Strategic Plan for COVID-19 Research Now Available

May 11, 2021

NIH recently released its updated Strategic Plan for COVID-19 Research, available on the NIH COVID-19 website. Responses to a Request for Information helped inform this iteration, building on progress since the 2020 plan. The updated strategic plan highlights progress made in the development of diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines, along with developing strategies on how to effectively provide these resources.

Continuation of Temporary Extension of Eligibility for the NIH K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award During the COVID-19 Pandemic

May 5, 2021

Under normal circumstances, individuals must have no more than four years of postdoctoral research experience to be eligible to apply for a K99/R00 Pathway to Independence award. Due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, NIH will be extending the two-receipt cycle extension (roughly eight additional months) of eligibility for prospective, eligible candidates for a K99/R00 application.

Helping To Protect the Privacy of Participants in Non-NIH Funded Research

April 27, 2021

You likely know that for human-participant research funded wholly or in part by NIH, we automatically issue Certificates of Confidentiality (CoCs) as a term and condition of award. CoCs protect identifiable, sensitive information of people who participate from being disclosed to others not associated with the study. But, for human-participant research funded by an entity other than NIH, did you know that you can reach out to us to request a CoC as well? Read on for more!

Reminder: NIH Will Continue to Accept Preliminary Data as Post-Submission Material Through January 2022 Council

April 6, 2021

In recognition of the fact that COVID-19 may still be adversely affecting the ability of applicants to generate preliminary data, NIH will continue to accept a one-page update with preliminary data as post-submission materials for applications submitted for the January 2022 Council (beginning with applications submitted for the May 25, 2021 due date for Fall 2021 review meetings), ONLY if the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) used for submission allowed preliminary data in the application.

The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Extramural Scientific Workforce – Outcomes from an NIH-Led Survey

March 25, 2021

At NIH, we recognized the many ways the COVID-19 pandemic could adversely affect the biomedical workforce, particularly members of underrepresented groups and vulnerable populations. In October 2020, NIH fielded two online surveys to objectively document COVID-19’s impact on extramural research. One survey assessed the perspective of individual research administration leaders at extramural institutions, and the other survey assessed the perspective of the researchers themselves. In this post, we offer a high-level overview of general trends noted within both surveys.

Parenting in a Time of COVID

March 9, 2021

Next week marks the one-year anniversary of NIH shifting to maximum telework in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Like employers and employees across the country, overnight we needed to adapt our entire enterprise and reinvent our jobs in the virtual workplace.

Extensions for Early Career Scientists Whose Career Trajectories Have Been Significantly Impacted by COVID-19

February 8, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic, along with extensive mitigation measures, has adversely affected progress in many biomedical research settings. Evidence from multiple sources, including a survey NIH issued to its supported extramural research workforce last fall, indicates legitimate concerns about career trajectory for early career scientists, including those with caretaker responsibilities. An article by Dr. Erin Gibson and her colleagues argued for a “reset” with focus on early career investigators. One point I took away from this paper is that a reset does not necessarily mean for us to go “back to normal” after the pandemic is over, because that time may have favored certain investigators and disfavored others (something I reflected on in this video and this blog).

Hearing your concerns, NIH issued a Guide Notice last week detailing our approach to support early career scientists whose career trajectories may have been significantly affected by the pandemic as funding will allow). Specifically, NIH is providing an opportunity for recipients in their last year of NIH Fellowship (“F”) and NIH Career Development (“K”) awards who have been impacted by COVID-19 to request extensions. Such extensions will be considered on a case-by-case basis, within the existing constraints of available funding. We encourage you to read the Guide Notice and if appropriate reach out to NIH staff as directed.

Check Out NIH’s New COVID-19 Research Website

January 19, 2021

We are pleased to announce that the new NIH COVID-19 website launched earlier this week. The site provides a central location for trusted, up-to-date, accurate information about NIH research and our strategic role in COVID-19 research. The site complements information made available on our COVID-19: Information for NIH Applicants and Recipients of NIH Funding webpage.