Wednesday, December 23, 2009

AHRQ application & review changes

The agency will adopt some, but not all, of the changes NIH is making. Check this announcement for details.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

NIH frequently requested reports

Lots of information is available at this site. Reports cover topics such as characteristics of investigators (gender, age), awards by institute and awards by grant type.

Friday, December 18, 2009

New NIH RO1 parent announcement

It's the one you need for grants submitted on or after Jan. 25, 2010, and it's available. Click the headline.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Conflict of interest & NIH grants

Read the latest report from the HHS Office of the Inspector General (more commonly known as the OIG) about how NIH grantees manage conflict of interest. When you click the link, go to the "Grants management" section of the report list, then click on "How Grantees Manage Financial Conflicts of Interest in Research Funded by the National Institutes of Health (OEI-03-07-00700)."

Thursday, December 10, 2009

"The art of obtaining grants"

An article titled "The art of obtaining grants," by E.B. Devine, was published in the March 2009 issue of The American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy 66(65), pages 580-587. The work was funded by AHRQ grant HS14739.

NIH Regional Seminar June in Portland, OR

NIH will present its seminar on program funding and grant administration June 24 and 25 in Portland, OR. An optional computer workshop is offered June 23. Click the link for details.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Tales of the NSF OIG

In the latest report from the NSF Office of the Inspector General, the agency cracks down on plagiarism in proposals. Also, a former research center employee faces prison for use of a state-issued purchase card to buy personal items. Click on the "Investigations" portion of the report.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

NIH guidance on responsible conduct of research training

This notice includes information on best practices and many other useful details.

New NIH application forms available

You will need to use these for proposals due on or after Jan. 25, 2010.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

NIH grant seminar April in Philadephia

The event is scheduled for April 15 and 16, with optional computer workshops April 14. Space is limited, and those interested in participating are advised to register early.

Friday, November 06, 2009

No RFP yet for NSF MRI FY10

NSF is still awaiting confirmation of funding before posting a call for proposals for a fiscal 2010 Major Research Instrumentation grant program. If funds become available, the deadline for proposals likely will be in January.

Sample of new NIH biosketch format

Click this headline for extensive information about the upcoming changes in the NIH proposal format. There is a link for a sample of the new biosketch format.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009 support available 24/7

Contact information for the Support Center: 1-800-518-4726 or

Monday, October 19, 2009

NSF Day Dec.18 at Middle Tennessee State

Registration is required. Click the headline for details.

Friday, October 16, 2009 webcast Oct. 21

Keep up with technical changes at by watching this webcast. Click the headline for viewing instructions. Click here to watch the webcast, which is scheduled for 1 to 2 p.m. EDT.

DARPA is on Facebook

You read that right: The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is on Facebook and has more than 1,700 fans. Click the headline to sign up.

Friday, October 09, 2009

New, improved links to grant-writing advice websites

The sidebar to the right contains a new, expanded list of links to grant-writing advice websites. Most, but not all, are agency-specific. tutorial: Completing an application

This is one of several how-to animated tutorials available at the website.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

NIH FAQs on ARRA: Click H-E-R-E

Questions about the unique reporting requirements? Click the headline for detailed information.

Confused about the new NIH forms? Help is available

The National Institutes of Health has released a clarification on when to use its new application package. Click the headline for details.

NIH makes life easier for grant reviewers

The National Institutes of Health extends a continuous submission process for its proposal reviewers. This gives them a chance to prepare and submit their own work for consideration.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Hawkeyes host NSF Day

The University of Iowa in Iowa City is hosting National Science Foundation Day Oct. 8. Agency officials will discuss the opportunities available as part of the state's recent designation as an Epscor state.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Got funding?

If not, and you're a graduate student doing energy-related basic research in physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, engineering, computational sciences or environmental sciences, check out the U.S. Department of Energy's Graduate Fellowships.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Latest statistics on federal R&D at universities

This links to a short summary document that includes other links to detailed statistical information, including the all-important institutional rankings.

New NSF PAPP available

The Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures guide is not mere pap; rather, it's the bible for applicants for National Science Foundation grants. Check out the changes in salary reimbursement policy.

New NSF Grant proposal guide

The new GPG is serious about the inclusion of mentoring plans for postdocs. Check out the "summary of significant changes" link at the guide website.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Surf's up: NSF in Santa Cruz

Hawaiian royalty first taught mainlanders to surf in this town, and the National Science Foundation will teach new scientists how to hang ten with federal funding. NSF Day at the University of California-Santa Cruz is scheduled for Nov. 20, 2009. Click the headline for details.

NIH: The forms, they are a changin'

The paper PHS 398 and the electronic SF 424 (R&R) application packages will be updated in December and must be used with grants submitted on or after Jan 25, 2010. It's related to the new, enhanced review criteria. Click the headline for more information.

NIH AREA grant expiration date extended

The expiration date of PA-06-042 has been extended to Jan. 10, 2010. "Beginning with the October 25, 2009 receipt date, the funding limit for the AREA (R15) will be increased to a total of $300,000 direct costs plus applicable Facilities and Administrative (F&A)/ indirect costs, for up to three years," the NIH states. Click the headline for details.

NEH database of funded projects

Wondering whether the National Endowment for the Humanities has funded anything in your field? Check the database to find out.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

NSF policy for responsible conduct of research (RCR)

NSF requires grant proposals to include a plan to train participants in the responsible conduct of research. Click the headline to read the announcement.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

NEH grant workshop at Central Arkansas

The University of Central Arkansas Sponsored Programs Office will host a National Endowment for the Humanities Grant Workshop. The workshop, conducted by Dr. Douglas Arnold, a senior program officer with NEH, will be from 9:30 a.m. to noon. Workshop attendees can also have individual appointments with Dr. Arnold from 1:30 to 6 p.m.; these are available on a first come, first served basis. Three networking/discussion sessions will be offered from 1:30 to 3 p.m. for (1) research administrators, (2) public school administrators and faculty and (3) humanities faculty and administrators from universities, four-year colleges and two-year colleges. There is no fee for the workshop, but space is limited and registration is required.
  • For more information, contact Beryline Temples at 501.450.3451 or email
  • For registration, contact Kimberly Ashley-Pauley at 501.450.3451 or email

Wednesday, August 19, 2009 open for registration

You will need to register here before submitting the quarterly reports required for Recovery Act grants. The link above takes you to NIH information for its grantees. The direct link to the website is

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

NIH Core Facilities (G20) proposal page limits

NIH has clarified language in its Recovery Act limited competition, Core Facility Renovation, Repair, and Improvement (G20) (RFA-RR-09-007) regarding page limits. Applications are limited to 20 pages of text. Click the headline to read the notice.

Thursday, August 06, 2009 unavailable Aug. 8 and 9 will be unavailable this weekend (Aug. 8 and 9) while upgrades are installed. You'll have to go to the beach instead of working on your grant submission.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

NIH Recovery Act reporting

Those Recovery Act dollars carry special reporting requirements. NIH provides details about those requirements at this website.

NSF Day at U. of Vermont

The National Science Foundation, Vermont Epscor, and the University of Vermont are hosting NSF Day Sept. 15 in Burlington. The session is geared for less-experienced grant seekers, but others can benefit from it. Click the headline for details.

Find Recovery Act funding is sponsoring a series of four webinars to assist grant seekers in finding funding opportunities supported by the Recovery Act. Session titles are: and FedBizOpps: Finding Recovery Act Opportunities

Introduction to and the Recovery Act

Finding Recovery Act Opportunities

Registration to Submit Recovery Act Opportunities.

Click on the headline for details.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

GAO releases report on

No surprises here for anyone who uses GAO recommendations include a government-wide definition of what constitutes a timely submission and the formation of an "applicant user group" through which government would get input from grantees. The Maven wonders how relevant this all is, given the current proliferation of alternative grant submission systems. BTW, GAO is on YouTube.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

NSF is on Facebook

Lots of interesting information. Click the headline to visit.

NSF is on Twitter

Updates on grant programs as well as announcements of scientific discoveries. Click on the headline.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Search NIH awards

A new, easy-to-use database. Take a look.

Clues on comparative effectiveness funding emerge

The Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality has posted a plan for use of Recovery Act funds slated for comparative effectiveness research. No call for proposals yet, though.

PIs say NCI too conservative in grantmaking

The June 28 issue of the New York Times had a piece in which cancer researchers said scientific progress is impeded by the conservative grant process at NIH.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Are ARRA reports really due July 10?

According to, it looks like the first reports will be due Oct. 10 The online reporting tool is not yet available. Click the link for details.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


Click the headline for FAQs written with complete words and sentences. :)

Friday, June 05, 2009

NSF Grant Webcast Redux

Miss the NSF webcast for the Major Research Instrumentation and Academic Research Infrastructure grants available under the Recovery Act? Relax -- it has been posted on the web, along with slides from the presentation. Grab a bag of popcorn and click the link above.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

NSF Regional Grants Conference: Oct. 5-6, Jackson, MS

It's the first NSF conference of the 2010 fiscal year. Click the link for details.

BTW, Jackson, MS, is the birthplace of Eudora Welty.

Monday, May 11, 2009

NIH enhanced peer review arrives

NIH review teams will now use the new scoring system when considering proposals. Click the headline for details about what it means for applicants and reviewers.

Friday, May 01, 2009

GO grants deadline extended to May 29

NIH has moved the deadline for its Recovery Act Grand Opportunity grants (NOT-OD-09-090) from May 27 to May 29. Click the headline to read the announcement.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

NSF has new inspector general

Allison C. Lerner is now Inspector General at the National Science Foundation. Click the headline for brief background information from NSF's website.

Thursday, April 23, 2009 "perfect storm" brewing; ports of refuge available

Monday, April 27, is the deadline for 29 federal grant programs. Needless to say, will be very busy. To minimize frustration, try to submit before the last minute, or use an alternative submission system. Some agencies will accept applications through their own systems. Check the accompanying post "Overburdened gets relief") for names of those agencies.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Overburdened gets relief

Interest in grants offered under the Recovery Act have taxed beyond its capabilities. OMB seeks to increase the capacity of In the meantime, some agencies are accepting applications through other submission systems. Click the link for details.

Monday, April 13, 2009

OMB seeks to improve -- fast

Federal officials are working to "initiate urgent improvements" to Grants.go, which was not built to handle the volume of application submissions generated by the Recovery Act. Grant-making agencies have been asked to chip in to pay for the improvements.

To read the memo from Peter Orszag, click the headline, then the link for M-09-17, "Improving" stakeholder webcast April 15 will provide its quarterly update at a webcast scheduled for 1-2 p.m. April 15. Registration is not required. Topics will include and the Recovery Act, recent system builds, and Click the headline for the webcast link.

Friday, April 10, 2009 offers grant application status

Investigators and sponsored projects offices can now check the status of grant applications to the National Science Foundation, USDA's CSREES program and DoD's Army Research Office. Click the headline to learn more.

OMB releases guidelines for agency handling of Recovery Act funds

Agencies must follow strict criteria in their handling of Recovery Act funds. Click the headline for a link to the latest OMB guidance on the topic.

NIH to consider use of $400 million in comparative effectiveness research

A newly formed council to consider the use of federal funds for research on the comparative effectiveness of health treatments seeks public comment on spending priorities. The council will conduct a "public listening session" April 14 in Washington, D.C. Those interested can also watch the session online. Click the headline for more details

Thursday, April 09, 2009 delaying submission of your NIH grant? Read this

Federal officials realize that the volume of funding opportunities created by the Recovery Act is taxing the capacity of NIH has some advice for investigators who have trouble meeting the deadline when submitting applications through

Give students, science educators summer opportunities, NIH says

NIH urges those with currently funded grants to apply for supplements that will allow them to bring students and elementary, middle and high school teachers into their labs this summer. Grantees also can support community college faculty and faculty from non-research intensive institutions. Funding announcement.

Monday, March 30, 2009

NIH Recovery Act FAQ

When will awards be made? When must projects be completed? Click on the headline to find out.

NSF Recovery Act FAQ

Will there be new programs? Will no-cost extensions be permitted? Click the headline to find out.

Friday, March 27, 2009

NSF to increase CAREER and IGERT awards

The National Science Foundation will use some Recovery Act funds to increase the number of awards it makes under the CAREER and IGERT programs. CAREER supports junior faculty, and IGERT supports interdisciplinary research and training for graduate students. Click the headline for more details about NSF's plans for the funding.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Recovery money plans at NSF

In its spending plans for Recovery Act funds, the National Science Foundation will prioritize the funding of new principal investigators and high-risk, high-return research projects. With a few exceptions, most proposals eligible for Recovery Act support are those that NSF already has received. Click the headline to see the details.

Friday, March 20, 2009

NIH construction grant webinar March 23

A videocast on the application process for two NIH construction-related grants will be presented from 1 to 2:30 p.m. March 23. Staff slides from the canceled March 16 session are available on the web now, and NIH urges prospective applicants to review those materials before the videocast.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

NIH grant webinar update

NIH's National Center for Research Resources is working to reschedule the March 16 webinar on construction grant opportunities that was canceled due to overwhelming interest from prospective applicants. Click the headline above to visit the page on which NCRR will post new webinar information as it becomes available. Find Recovery Act opportunities has made it easy to search specifically for Recovery Act grant opportunities. Click the headline above, then click the button at the G.g website. Click "sort by open date" to view the most recently posted opportunities first.

Monday, March 16, 2009 woes & NIH webinar delay is offline today, according to the blog. The G.g folks hope to have it up and running by this evening. Click the headline to visit the blog.

Also, today's NIH webinar on construction grants was canceled. Information about construction grants is expected to appear on the NIH website. Meanwhile, check out their FAQs for the two construction programs:

Extramural Research Facilities Improvement Program (C06) Questions and Answers

Core Facility Renovation, Repair and Improvement (G20) Questions and Answers

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Recovery Act Central for university grant seekers

The University of Rhode Island has put together a website that consolidates much information about grant opportunities available to universities under the Recovery Act. It will be updated as new information becomes available. Click the headline to take a look.

OMG II: OMB says may falter under ARRA grant volume

OMB Director Peter Orszag has put federal agencies on notice that interest in Recovery Act grants may bring to its knees. He instructs DHHS to work on increasing the capacity of, and instructs other agencies to "immediately identify alternative methods for accepting grant applications during the Recovery Act's expected peak period." Click the headline to read the memo.

OMG! NIH is on Twitter

Get notice of NIH funding announcements anytime, anywhere. Its RSS news feed sends tweets to Twitter, giving investigators up-to-minute information about grant opportunities. This is beast!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Stimulus funding at NIH II: Show me the money

Click on the headline to go to a list of NIH funding opportunities under the Recovery Act. This site provides specific request-for-application numbers, which link you to the full text of the RFA. Categories of grants include Challenge (research) Grants, instrumentation grants and construction grants.

Recovery Act websites by agency

Each grant-making agency has a web page on which to discuss its response to the Recovery Act. Click on the headline to visit a list of these sites. The amount and specificity of the information provided varies by agency.

Finding Recovery Act grants

A quick and easy way to stay on top of announcements of new grants funded by the Recovery Act is to visit the link created for this purpose. Simply click on the headline above to go to the main page. Then click on "Recovery Act Opportunities." To view only the most recent postings, click the "Sort by open date" link just above the grid, in the middle of the page.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Stimulus funding at NIH

The National Institutes of Health will use stimulus money to fund peer-reviewed proposals that were deemed meritorious but did not receive awards due to lack of funds. Stimulus money also will be used for infrastructure. Click the title to read the details provided by the agency.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Science funding in stimulus bill

The stimulus bill Congress finalized this week includes $21.5 billion for scientific research. Under the plan, the National Institutes of Health would received $10.4 billion; the National Science Foundation, $3 billion; and the Department of Energy, $1.6 billion. Read the details on the website of AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science). Click the headline to get there.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Peachy keen: NIH grant seminar April in Atlanta

The National Institutes of Health will conduct the first semi-annual regional grants seminar of 2009 in April in Atlanta. It is scheduled for April 16 and 17 and is co-hosted by Georgia State University and the Georgia Institute of Technology. A hands-on computer workshop will be offered April 15, but seats are limited. Click the headline to navigate to registration information.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009 technical troubleshooting

Need to check AOR status? Verify Adobe version? Understand an error message? This new website is for you.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Federal contract spending: Just the facts

The USA Spending website provides detailed information about federal contracts awarded. You can sort the data by state, and you can look at exactly what contracts a given organization has received. And it's easy to use. This is FFATA at work. For details on FFATA, visit that link in the blog archive.

Monday, February 02, 2009

What NIH spends on research for specific diseases

Want to know how much the National Institutes of Health spent last year for research on Alzheimer's or lung cancer? This link provides a list of how much NIH has spent in 215 separate disease categories over the past several years. Apparently, it is the first time this information has been available to the public in this format.


The National Institutes of Health has posted a new set of frequently asked questions about protocols for the use of animals in research. Need to know how frequently the Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) must review protocols? Click the headline to find the answer.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Postdoc mentoring 411

Need advice about how to comply with the new federal requirement to mentor your postdoc? Help is on the way. Click the headline and you will go to the National Institutes of Health site. Once there, click on "Individual Development Plan for Postdoctoral Fellows." The plan was developed by the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. It includes a good, short bibliography for new scientists looking for career advice.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

NSF plan would end voluntary cost sharing

The National Science Board has released for public comment a draft of its report, "Investing in the Future: NSF (National Science Foundation) Cost Sharing Policies for a Robust Federal Research Enterprise." The two key recommendations are: (1) to require cost sharing in specific circumstances when it will further programmatic goals and (2) to prohibit voluntary cost sharing. Read the full report by clicking the headline.

Friday, January 23, 2009

NSF grant with postdoc? Don't forget mentoring plan

The National Science Foundation's new Grant Proposal Guide, which is effective this month, requires that any proposal requesting funding for postdoctoral researchers must include a discussion of mentoring activities to be provided to the postdocs.

Repeat: This is not optional. Include a section on mentoring your postdoc in your 15-page project description or prepare to have the proposal returned without review. Click on the headline to view the portion of the GPG that sets forth the new requirement. Scroll down to "Proposal Contents," Section C.2.d.i.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

NIH salary cap increased

Effective Jan. 1, the annual salary limitation on grants from the National Institutes of Health is increased to $196,700. Click the headline for the official announcement.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

New IRB registration requirements

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has published revised rules for the registration of Institutional Review Boards, commonly known as IRBs. The changes are narrower that originally proposed in 2004. Two key changes: IRBs must provide an approximate number of active protocols, and an approximate number of full-time equivalent positions dedicated to IRB administrative activities. Click on the headline to see the full text of the announcement. It's long, so if you just want to see the changes, scroll down to Federal Register page 2405.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Submitting a proposal? Beware Inauguration Day holiday

You probably know that Monday, Jan. 19 is a federal holiday -- Martin Luther King Jr. Day. But Tuesday, Jan. 20 is Inauguration Day, and a holiday for some federal employees who work in the District of Columbia. This can affect grant applicants.

Bottom line: The NIH eRA help desk will be closed Tuesday because the staff won't be able to make their way through the inaugural crowds to get to the office. However, if you are submitting a proposal from the comfort of your office, Inauguration Day isn't a holiday for you. It still counts as one of the two "viewing days" of your proposal after submission to the commons. If you submit on Friday, you have until midnight Wednesday to view the proposal.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

NSF Regional Grants Conference: Tempe, AZ

The National Science Foundation will present a regional grants conference March 30-31 in Tempe, AZ. Arizona State University is host. Can't decide whether to attend? Consider that the average high temperature for these dates in Tempe is 80 degrees.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Early Stage Investigators: Make yourselves known at NIH

Are you a biomedical researcher at the beginning of your career? The National Institutes of Health will give special consideration to proposals from "early stage investigators." But to do that, they need to know of your status.

An early stage investigator is one who received a terminal research degree or completed a medical residency in the past 10 years and has not received a major NIH research award. (See NIH web page for details.) Applications from early investigators will be reviewed with more emphasis on the proposed research and less on the investigator's track record.

Use the eRA Commons to update your personal profile and identify yourself as an early stage investigator. Do it before you submit your RO1 application. Get more information about the early investigator program by clicking on the headline above.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

More on NIH success rates

Here is a breakdown by institute of proposal success rates at the National Institutes of Health. The chart gives total number of proposals received and number awarded as well as dollar amount data. Figures are available for 10 fiscal years, with 2007 the most recent.