Supporting the Call to Peer Review Service

Last year we highlighted a new section of the NIH Data Book that provides statistics about peer review across NIH, including peer review organized by the Center of Scientific Review as well as peer review organized by NIH institutes and centers. Then, and now, these data truly demonstrate how you, our peer reviewers, are the lifeline of the scientific process. During 2014 nearly 24,000 reviewers participated in more than 2,500 peer review meetings to assess the scientific and technical merit of NIH applications, and many of those reviewers participated in multiple meetings. Your service to NIH expands our capacity to fund the best science, and provides an essential breadth of perspectives on the research projects and research training that NIH supports. In the lab and in the study section, we’re grateful for the myriad ways you work with us to advance human health and benefit the health of our nation, and the world. …. Continue reading

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New Efforts to Maximize Fairness in NIH Peer Review

We want you to know NIH is working on multiple fronts to get to the bottom of unexplained racial disparities in R01 grant funding and to maximize fairness in NIH peer review. Since the problems and the solutions are bigger than NIH, we have reached out to the scientific community and other concerned citizens for help. Now armed with a team of experts and a set of new initiatives, we’d like to tell you about our efforts to address this important issues –- particularly an exciting opportunity for you to submit your input. …. Continue reading

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A Change in Our Resubmission Policy

We have had much discussion on this blog about NIH’s resubmission policy (most often referred to as the NIH A2 policy). I have also heard from many of you in a variety of forums, expressing serious concerns about the impact of NIH’s resubmission policy on applicants during these times of tight funding. We’ve listened to your concerns, and we are making changes. …. Continue reading

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New Data on Peer Review Across NIH

RePORT is your go-to source for NIH data, and I’m excited to let you know about a new addition to the NIH Data Book on RePORT: data on peer review across NIH. The new “NIH Peer Review” section provides information related to initial peer review across NIH. It includes data on peer review organized by the Center of Scientific Review as well as by NIH institutes and centers. …. Continue reading

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More on Percentiling

Understanding NIH’s system of percentiling can be a challenge. My posts on how percentiles relate to paylines and success rates continues to get a lot of hits. A recent presentation by NIH’s Center for Scientific Review provided an example that I thought might be helpful to people trying to understand more about how a percentile is calculated for some grant applications. …. Continue reading

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Another Look at Enhancing Peer Review

A critical component in assuring the efficacy of NIH’s peer review system is the continuous assessment of peer review activities, to be sure that the practices and policies uphold the core values of peer review. In fact, this continual assessment was a key component of the 2008 NIH Enhancing Peer Review Initiative. …. Continue reading

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The A2 Resubmission Policy Continues: A Closer Look at Recent Data

We have heard from many of you about the policy to sunset A2 applications. As you may remember, this policy was developed as part of NIH efforts to enhance peer review. There were concerns that applications were piling up in a “queue” and subject to a holding pattern that delayed funding until the resubmission (A1 and A2) stages, and as a consequence highly meritorious science proposed in original (A0) applications was made to wait additional months for funding. Continue reading

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What’s Next?—Reviewing Your Summary Statement and Thinking About Resubmitting

So you’re wearing your lucky shoes and are ready to take a first look at the results of your grant review. Whether you are anticipating doing a victory dance or getting ready to head out to the nearest kickboxing class, it’s a good time to think about what comes next. Continue reading

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Moving Forward with Special Council Review

It’s been three months since I discussed how, during May Advisory Council meetings, NIH would pilot a new Special Council Review process for particularly well-funded applicants. Since that time, we ran the pilot and carefully considered all the great feedback we received from Advisory Council members and staff. We are now ready to implement the final policy on Special Council Review. Continue reading

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