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FH Health Research Intelligence Unit How to Write Successful Proposals and Grants.

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Presentation on theme: "FH Health Research Intelligence Unit How to Write Successful Proposals and Grants."— Presentation transcript:

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2 FH Health Research Intelligence Unit How to Write Successful Proposals and Grants

3 How to Write Successful Research Grant Applications

4 Rosa Haywood ( ), Research Ethics Coordinator, Research Ethics Board.Rosa Haywood Susan Chunick ( ), Director, Research Administration and Development (RAD). Susan Chunick Michael Wasdell ( ), Grant Facilitator-Writer. Rae Spiwak ( ), Epidemiologist. Who we are: Camille Viray ( ), RAD Administrative Assistant.

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6 RESEARCH ETHICS BOARD STATUS REPORT 01 September 2008 Total Studies 492 (From 2005 September 01 to Date) ACTIVE STUDIES =200 PENDING APPROVAL = 29 Active Studies by Department Area Access & Utilization 1 Family Medicine 2Nursing4Planning1 Acute Programs 2Finance1Obstetrics7 Professional Practice 6 Administration2 Food & Nutrition 2 Occupational Therapy 1Psychiatry14 Biomedical Engineering 1 Health Services 3Oncology7 Public Health Prevention 1 Cardiology31 Infection Control 1 Operating Room 1 Residency Facility 2 Chronic Care 1 Internal Medicine 2Orthopaedics17Respiratory2 Critical Care (ICU) 8 Material Management 1 Palliative Care 2 Social Work 3 Decision Support Services 1Medicine6Pathology1Surgery2 Elder Research 2 Mental Health 7Pediatrics6 Workplace Health 8 Emergency4 Multiple Sclerosis 12 People Services 1 Non FH Research 3 Environmental Health 2Nephrology6Pharmacy9 Ethics1Neurology1Physiotherapy2

7 FH Health Research Intelligence Unit How can we help? Epidemiologist Specifying the research goal, objectives and hypothesis Specifying the research goal, objectives and hypothesis Identifying measurable outcomes Identifying measurable outcomes Specifying the variables for analysis Specifying the variables for analysis Identifying sources of data Identifying sources of data Developing data collection tools for quantitative or qualitative studies Developing data collection tools for quantitative or qualitative studies Developing the statistical analysis plan Developing the statistical analysis plan Analyzing the data Analyzing the data Understanding how to use statistical software, such as SPSS Understanding how to use statistical software, such as SPSS Grant Facilitator-Writer Conducting a search for funding opportunities Conducting a search for funding opportunities Automatic notification of new funding sources and deadlines Automatic notification of new funding sources and deadlines Identifying a research team Identifying a research team Preparing letters of intent Preparing letters of intent Identifying resources required for conducting research Identifying resources required for conducting research Formulating the research budget Formulating the research budget Writing the grant application in collaboration with researchers Writing the grant application in collaboration with researchers Understanding FH and funding agency requirements regarding preparation of specific documents Understanding FH and funding agency requirements regarding preparation of specific documents

8 The Great Idea Putting your ideas for research down on paper will allow you to articulate clearly your ideas to others Putting your ideas for research down on paper will allow you to articulate clearly your ideas to others Create a program proposal to help present your idea to others. Create a program proposal to help present your idea to others. Create a program outline that will enable people who are not involved in the study to understand exactly what you plan to do Create a program outline that will enable people who are not involved in the study to understand exactly what you plan to do Review the literature to ensure that your proposal is unique Review the literature to ensure that your proposal is unique Obtain feedback from experts, colleagues and stakeholders Obtain feedback from experts, colleagues and stakeholders

9 Develop a Project Management Plan Prepare an up to date resume/curriculum vitae Prepare an up to date resume/curriculum vitae Identify appropriate sources of funding Identify appropriate sources of funding Select funding source Select funding source Develop a timeline for development of research proposal and submission of letter of intent and application for funding Develop a timeline for development of research proposal and submission of letter of intent and application for funding Identify the research collaborators Identify the research collaborators Prepare the budget Prepare the budget Prepare the grant application package Prepare the grant application package Submit grant application to RAD office to obtain signature of authorizing Executive Submit grant application to RAD office to obtain signature of authorizing Executive signature Submit for and obtain approval by FH Research Ethics Board prior to or in tandem with application for funding. Submit for and obtain approval by FH Research Ethics Board prior to or in tandem with application for funding.FH Research Ethics BoardFH Research Ethics Board

10 How we can help - HRIU For assistance with any of the above steps, contact the FH grant facilitator-writer, Michael Wasdell, who can: For assistance with any of the above steps, contact the FH grant facilitator-writer, Michael Wasdell, who can:Michael WasdellMichael Wasdell Provide overall project management to ensure that FH internal and agency requirements for funding applications are met Provide overall project management to ensure that FH internal and agency requirements for funding applications are met Co-ordinate the development of the research proposal with the FH epidemiologist, Rae Spiwak, Co-ordinate the development of the research proposal with the FH epidemiologist, Rae Spiwak, Collaborate in the writing of the grant application Collaborate in the writing of the grant application

11 Planning for the Grant Application Funding Cycles Funding Cycles Unique, Annual, Semi-Annual, etc. Unique, Annual, Semi-Annual, etc. Application Process Application Process Announcement – Request for Applications (RFA) Announcement – Request for Applications (RFA) Letter of intent - LOI Letter of intent - LOI Signals to the agency that you will be submitting an applicationSignals to the agency that you will be submitting an application Some agencies may request a brief synopsis of the proposal to screen out inappropriate applicantsSome agencies may request a brief synopsis of the proposal to screen out inappropriate applicants Time between RFA and LOI may only be 1 or 2 monthsTime between RFA and LOI may only be 1 or 2 months Full application Full application Time between letter of intent and full application is usually 2-3 monthsTime between letter of intent and full application is usually 2-3 months Award Announcement Award Announcement May be up to 6 months May be up to 6 months

12 Planning for the Grant Application Having adequate time to prepare your application is essential Having adequate time to prepare your application is essential It is best to have your research ideas developed, team identified and proposal written in advance of the RFA It is best to have your research ideas developed, team identified and proposal written in advance of the RFA Unfortunately, this does not happen frequently Unfortunately, this does not happen frequently Keep in mind that the time from RFA to funding decision can be up to one year Keep in mind that the time from RFA to funding decision can be up to one year Tip – begin at least 6 months in advance of deadline

13 Where to find funding National and regional agencies for health research (eg., CIHR, MSFHR, BCMSF) National and regional agencies for health research (eg., CIHR, MSFHR, BCMSF) Provincial branches and associations of health agencies (eg., Canadian Lung Association, Canadian Cancer Society, Heart and Stroke Foundation) Provincial branches and associations of health agencies (eg., Canadian Lung Association, Canadian Cancer Society, Heart and Stroke Foundation) Professional Associations Professional Associations Health/Disease based Associations Health/Disease based Associations

14 FH HRIU consultation request form contains a listing of funding agencies. Community of Science Funding Opportunities Database. Community of Science Funding Opportunities Database. web based web based 400,000 listings 400,000 listings Contact Rosa Haywood FH Funding Resources News Now has monthly updates of new funding opportunities

15 Grant Matchmaking Your research matches the objectives of the funder Your research matches the objectives of the funder They have made previous awards in your area of research They have made previous awards in your area of research They make awards to your institution They make awards to your institution You meet basic investigator eligibility You meet basic investigator eligibility They have sufficient funds They have sufficient funds The application deadline is achievable The application deadline is achievable

16 Request for Applications Understanding the funding formats Understanding the funding formats Operating grants Operating grants Team grants Team grants Seed/development grants Seed/development grants Randomized controlled trials Randomized controlled trials Research synthesis Research synthesis Environmental scans Environmental scans Workshops Workshops Special initiatives and priority announcements Special initiatives and priority announcements

17 Strategy Consider all the funding formats with respect to your proposal Consider all the funding formats with respect to your proposal Select several funding programs to increase your chances Select several funding programs to increase your chances Think of ways to build a program of research Think of ways to build a program of research Scenario Scenario Apply for funding for an environmental scan. This helps you to identify a poorly researched area. Apply for funding for an environmental scan. This helps you to identify a poorly researched area. With this knowledge, you apply for a team planning grant to bring together key stakeholders and researchers with similar interest to identify a program of research With this knowledge, you apply for a team planning grant to bring together key stakeholders and researchers with similar interest to identify a program of research The team submits for a seed grant to obtain pilot data and demonstrate the feasibility of the research and the likelihood of success The team submits for a seed grant to obtain pilot data and demonstrate the feasibility of the research and the likelihood of success With a solid team, rationale and foundational data, you apply for an operating grant With a solid team, rationale and foundational data, you apply for an operating grant

18 Eligibility Requirements Principal Investigator and/or Co-Investigators Principal Investigator and/or Co-Investigators Role - academic, clinical or decision making position Role - academic, clinical or decision making position Degree and profession Degree and profession Experience Experience Previous awardsPrevious awards PublicationsPublications Evidence of completed researchEvidence of completed research Years of research experienceYears of research experience Tips Tips For national funding agencies, partner with an experienced researcherFor national funding agencies, partner with an experienced researcher Consider participating as a co-investigator to establish track recordConsider participating as a co-investigator to establish track record Contact funding agency to review qualifications – exceptions may be madeContact funding agency to review qualifications – exceptions may be made

19 Eligibility Requirements Institution Institution Academic Academic Health services Health services Government or government agency Government or government agency Community agency Community agency Institutional role - Sponsor Institutional role - Sponsor Administer and account for grant funds Administer and account for grant funds Research ethics review Research ethics review Academic oversight Academic oversight Facility and staff support Facility and staff support Appropriate research environment Appropriate research environment

20 Eligibility Requirements Type of research Type of research Some agencies may request specific research formats and exclude others Some agencies may request specific research formats and exclude others Biomedical, Clinical, Health Services, PopulationBiomedical, Clinical, Health Services, Population Conclusion Oriented, Decision OrientedConclusion Oriented, Decision Oriented Other Other Geographic location Geographic location Country of citizenship Country of citizenship Residency Residency Co-Sponsorship Co-Sponsorship

21 General Tips Review funding agency guidelines Review funding agency guidelines Make sure your proposal fits within the guidelines Make sure your proposal fits within the guidelines Look at funding allotment of past competitions to ensure that your financial request is reasonable Look at funding allotment of past competitions to ensure that your financial request is reasonable Check with agency to obtain updates on changes to guidelines and deadlines Check with agency to obtain updates on changes to guidelines and deadlines Follow all the rules and requests specified in the application guidelines Follow all the rules and requests specified in the application guidelines Is the proposal ethical? Is the proposal ethical?

22 Preparing the Proposal

23 Abstract Introduction (including statement of problem, goals, objectives and significance of research) Background or literature review Method Knowledge Dissemination List of References Personnel Budget Typical parts of a research proposal include

24 Abstract Short paragraph that is a clear, logical summary of your proposal Short paragraph that is a clear, logical summary of your proposal Usually does not exceed 250 words Usually does not exceed 250 words

25 Introduction Should begin with a capsule statement of what is being proposed and then should proceed to introduce the subject to a stranger. Should begin with a capsule statement of what is being proposed and then should proceed to introduce the subject to a stranger. Should not assume that your reader is familiar with your subject. Should not assume that your reader is familiar with your subject. Should be comprehensible to an informed lay reader. It should give enough background to enable the reader to place your particular research problem in a context of common knowledge and should show how its solution will advance the field or be important for some other work. Should be comprehensible to an informed lay reader. It should give enough background to enable the reader to place your particular research problem in a context of common knowledge and should show how its solution will advance the field or be important for some other work. In introducing the research problem, it is sometimes helpful to say what it is not, especially, if it could easily be confused with related work. In introducing the research problem, it is sometimes helpful to say what it is not, especially, if it could easily be confused with related work. You may also need to explain the underlying assumption of your research or the hypotheses you will be using. You may also need to explain the underlying assumption of your research or the hypotheses you will be using.

26 Background Literature reviews should be selective and critical. Literature reviews should be selective and critical. Reviewers do not want to read through a voluminous working bibliography; they want to know the especially pertinent works and your evaluation of them. Reviewers do not want to read through a voluminous working bibliography; they want to know the especially pertinent works and your evaluation of them. Discussions of work done by others should therefore lead the reader to a clear impression of how you will be building upon what has already been done and how your work differs from theirs. Discussions of work done by others should therefore lead the reader to a clear impression of how you will be building upon what has already been done and how your work differs from theirs. It is important to establish what is original in your approach, what circumstances have changed since related work was done, or what is unique about the time and place of the proposed research. It is important to establish what is original in your approach, what circumstances have changed since related work was done, or what is unique about the time and place of the proposed research.

27 Method The heart of the proposal and is the primary concern of the technical reviewers The heart of the proposal and is the primary concern of the technical reviewers Be as detailed as possible about the schedule of the proposed work. Be as detailed as possible about the schedule of the proposed work. Objectives/Research Questions/Hypothesis Objectives/Research Questions/Hypothesis Methods, study design Methods, study design Sample Selection/Sample Size Sample Selection/Sample Size Data Measurement Data Measurement Data Collection Data Collection Data Analysis Data Analysis Be specific about the means of evaluating the data or the conclusions. Be specific about the means of evaluating the data or the conclusions. Be certain that the connection between the research objectives and the research method is evident. Be certain that the connection between the research objectives and the research method is evident.

28 Knowledge Dissemination Plan

29 Knowledge Dissemination Very important step Very important step What will you do with your new found knowledge? What will you do with your new found knowledge? How will you share this knowledge? How will you share this knowledge? Who will benefit from this knowledge sharing? Who will benefit from this knowledge sharing? Applications must include a clear, explicit, and manageable knowledge translation plan, which specifies the intended audience(s), the means of involvement and communication, and the intended post-grant follow-up. CIHR (2006) Applications must include a clear, explicit, and manageable knowledge translation plan, which specifies the intended audience(s), the means of involvement and communication, and the intended post-grant follow-up. CIHR (2006)

30 References Placed at the end of the text Placed at the end of the text Lists text and information included in proposal from other authors/sources Lists text and information included in proposal from other authors/sources The grant guidelines will specify the format of in-text citations and reference list The grant guidelines will specify the format of in-text citations and reference list

31 Biographies This section usually consists of two parts: an explanation of the proposed personnel arrangements and the biographical information for co-investigators. This section usually consists of two parts: an explanation of the proposed personnel arrangements and the biographical information for co-investigators. The explanation should specify how many persons at what percentage of time and in what professional/academic categories will be participating in the project. If the program is complex and involves people from other departments or institutions, the organization of the staff and the lines of responsibility should be made clear. The explanation should specify how many persons at what percentage of time and in what professional/academic categories will be participating in the project. If the program is complex and involves people from other departments or institutions, the organization of the staff and the lines of responsibility should be made clear.

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33 Communication Know your audience Know your audience Review panels are often composed of content experts as well as generalists Review panels are often composed of content experts as well as generalists Consider bias, myths and other unfounded opinions Consider bias, myths and other unfounded opinions Put your readers first Put your readers first Reviewers are usually volunteers so try to make reading your application pleasant Reviewers are usually volunteers so try to make reading your application pleasant Reviewers may have limited time to review your proposal – an easy read is very appreciated Reviewers may have limited time to review your proposal – an easy read is very appreciated Your proposal may be one of 20 that the reviewer must evaluate – make it stand out Your proposal may be one of 20 that the reviewer must evaluate – make it stand out Compare your proposal to the RFA to ensure that it contains all the required elements Compare your proposal to the RFA to ensure that it contains all the required elements Bolding of relevant information can help the reviewer make connections to key evaluation categories Bolding of relevant information can help the reviewer make connections to key evaluation categories Use tables and figures if they are informative and help to reduce text Use tables and figures if they are informative and help to reduce text

34 Writing Tips Organize the content for logical flow of ideas Use lead statements as an opening to any section state briefly the most important concept and then provide background/context Check grammar and tense Cut wordiness Eliminate jargon Avoid or limit acronyms Obtain feedback from peers This will prevent your proposal from looking like………

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36 The Budget Prepare budget in consultation with: FH Human Resources if it is intended to hire grant staff and contractors before finalizing budgets. Note that benefits and future salary increases may have to be accounted for in the budget. FH Departments/Areas, such as Decision Support, Health Records, Laboratory/Pathology, Medical Imaging, Operating Room, Patient Care and Pharmacy if any of these will be asked to provide research-related services. For information on the process for obtaining Departmental Agreement for Providing Research-related Services (DAR), see the DAR webpage.DAR

37 Budget Planning Personnel Personnel Salaries and wages Salaries and wages Primary research staffPrimary research staff Principal Investigator and Co-Investigators not usually coveredPrincipal Investigator and Co-Investigators not usually covered Estimated merit increases Estimated merit increases Anticipated increases in minimum wage Anticipated increases in minimum wage Benefits Benefits Excluded staffExcluded staff Bargaining unitsBargaining units

38 Budget Planning Facility Expenses Facility Expenses Telecommunications Telecommunications Phone, fax, internetPhone, fax, internet Installation expensesInstallation expenses Furnishings Furnishings Maintenance and Cleaning Maintenance and Cleaning Overhead* Overhead* Utilities: gas, electricity, waterUtilities: gas, electricity, water *overhead not usually covered by Canadian agencies

39 Budget Planning Computers and other specialty equipment* Computers and other specialty equipment* Cost of equipment Cost of equipment Installation expenses Installation expenses Lease, warranty and maintenance contracts Lease, warranty and maintenance contracts Repair Repair * In most cases, equipment purchased through a grant becomes the property of the sponsor institution

40 Budget Planning Office Supplies Office Supplies Paper Paper Photocopying Photocopying Binders Binders Storage – file cabinets Storage – file cabinets Medical Supplies Medical Supplies Specimen vials Specimen vials Clinical assessment supplies Clinical assessment supplies

41 Budget Planning Consultants Consultants Dues, memberships, subscriptions Dues, memberships, subscriptions Staff mileage and parking Staff mileage and parking Patient expenses Patient expenses Postage Postage Courier Courier Training sessions Training sessions Media Media Travel, meeting and conference expenses Travel, meeting and conference expenses

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43 Budget Justification Explains how the money will be spent and justifies the need for the requested amount Explains how the money will be spent and justifies the need for the requested amount Without a good budget justification, a funder may reduce the amount of the award, potentially limiting the feasibility of the project Without a good budget justification, a funder may reduce the amount of the award, potentially limiting the feasibility of the project

44 Budget Tips More detail is better than less More detail is better than less Prepare both a line-item budget as well as a budget narrative describing each line-item cost in detail Prepare both a line-item budget as well as a budget narrative describing each line-item cost in detail Dont round out. Dont round out. Provide bids and estimates for consultants, equipment, supplies etc. Provide bids and estimates for consultants, equipment, supplies etc. Dont pad or economize the budget – good reviewers know the cost of goods and services Dont pad or economize the budget – good reviewers know the cost of goods and services Include sources of in-kind contributions Include sources of in-kind contributions Volunteer time Volunteer time Donated space Donated space Borrowed equipment Borrowed equipment Donated supplies Donated supplies

45 Budget Guidelines Budget guidelines are usually found in the application guide Budget guidelines are usually found in the application guide List allowable costs List allowable costs List excluded costs List excluded costs Specify matching-funding if necessary (eg., co-sponsored funding) Specify matching-funding if necessary (eg., co-sponsored funding) Provide instructions on how to justify the costs. Provide instructions on how to justify the costs.

46 Important Attachments

47 Curriculum Vitae Components Components Academic preparation Academic preparation Positions/Appointments Positions/Appointments Awards/Scholarships Awards/Scholarships Grants Grants Collaboration Collaboration Publications Publications Presentations Presentations Canadian Common CV Canadian Common CV

48 Letters of Support Department and/or sponsor institution Collaborating institutions Community partners Statement of support Relevance of proposal to writer/department/institution Summary of involvement How the research results will be used

49 Quotes to Support Budget Include quotes for: Include quotes for: Consultants* Consultants* Services Services Equipment Equipment Supplies Supplies *Fee for service consultation for grant funded projects is provided by the Fraser Health Epidemiologist

50 Research Ethics Board Approval Some funding agencies require notice of REB approval Some funding agencies require notice of REB approval Some will request approval before funding is awarded Some will request approval before funding is awarded Some will request approval before funds are released Some will request approval before funds are released

51 All done? Proof read all documents Proof read all documents Have someone else proof read Have someone else proof read Grant facilitator Grant facilitator Colleague Colleague Lay person Lay person Check that all components have been assembled Check that all components have been assembled Obtain signatures Obtain signatures Department Head Department Head Fraser Health Signatory – Geoff Crampton (3 days) Fraser Health Signatory – Geoff Crampton (3 days) Make necessary number of copies Make necessary number of copies Courier or application (retain routing slips/tracking history) Courier or application (retain routing slips/tracking history)

52 Now you can take a break…… ….before the next grant deadline

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54 The Review Process FUNDING

55 The Review Review of the Proposal Significance and relevance to health Significance and relevance to health Knowledge of the field (cited literature) Knowledge of the field (cited literature) Clear, testable hypothesis or central research problem, appropriate methods Clear, testable hypothesis or central research problem, appropriate methods Originality and innovation in concept or approach Originality and innovation in concept or approach Feasibility of work plan Feasibility of work plan

56 The Review Review of the Applicants Qualifications and experience Qualifications and experience Track record Track record Past grants Past grants Publications Publications Supportive environment Supportive environment

57 Example – Reviewer Checklist RATIONALE, RELEVANCE, ORIGINALITY Does the proposal explain why this project should be undertaken? (5 points) Does the proposal explain why this project should be undertaken? (5 points) Does the preamble reflect an adequate review of the literature? (10 points) Does the preamble reflect an adequate review of the literature? (10 points) Is the project relevant to the funding program? (5 points) Is the project relevant to the funding program? (5 points) Is the proposed project original or unique in any respect (is it a new problem or question? Does the research apply a new or unique study method or evaluation technique?) (5 points) Is the proposed project original or unique in any respect (is it a new problem or question? Does the research apply a new or unique study method or evaluation technique?) (5 points)

58 Example – Reviewer Checklist SIGNIFICANCE OF THE RESEARCH a) A project scope of major tangible benefit to patient care (e.g. potential impact on patient morbidity, mortality, an innovative program that advances direct patient care) (10points) a) A project scope of major tangible benefit to patient care (e.g. potential impact on patient morbidity, mortality, an innovative program that advances direct patient care) (10points) b) A project scope of perceptible tangible benefit to patient care (e.g. retrospective reviews, compatibility studies, surveys) (5 points) b) A project scope of perceptible tangible benefit to patient care (e.g. retrospective reviews, compatibility studies, surveys) (5 points) c) A project scope of limited impact on patient care. (1 point) c) A project scope of limited impact on patient care. (1 point) (Select the one statement that you believe best describes the significance of the proposed research) Please assign a score between 1 and 10. (Examples below)

59 Example – Reviewer Checklist RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS AND OBJECTIVES Are the objectives for the project clearly stated in terms of the end points or outcomes? (5 points) Are the objectives for the project clearly stated in terms of the end points or outcomes? (5 points) RESEARCH METHODOLOGY Does the proposal describe in sufficient clarity/detail the study method to be used (8 points) Does the proposal describe in sufficient clarity/detail the study method to be used (8 points) Is the described method valid for the stated objectives? (8 points) Is the described method valid for the stated objectives? (8 points) Are the sample population, sampling technique and sample size valid and clearly described? (8 points) Are the sample population, sampling technique and sample size valid and clearly described? (8 points) Is the proposed data analysis appropriate for the nature of the data collected (including statistical tests if appropriate) (8 points) Is the proposed data analysis appropriate for the nature of the data collected (including statistical tests if appropriate) (8 points) Is the study ethical, in so far as the potential risks and benefits to the patients and/or society?(8 points) Is the study ethical, in so far as the potential risks and benefits to the patients and/or society?(8 points)

60 Example – Reviewer Checklist PERSONNEL AND FACILITIES Are the professional competencies and experiences of the principal investigator(s) appropriate to carry out the work required? (5 points) Are the professional competencies and experiences of the principal investigator(s) appropriate to carry out the work required? (5 points) ECONOMIC EFFICIENCY, PROJECT SCOPE AND TIMETABLE ECONOMIC EFFICIENCY, PROJECT SCOPE AND TIMETABLE Are all the necessary budget inputs defined and costed (e.g. personnel, supplies,equipment)? (4 points) Are all the necessary budget inputs defined and costed (e.g. personnel, supplies,equipment)? (4 points) Do the amounts allocated to the various components of the budget appear to be appropriate? (4 points) Do the amounts allocated to the various components of the budget appear to be appropriate? (4 points) Has a proposed work plan been established identifying activities, centres of responsibility and target completion dates? (4 points) Has a proposed work plan been established identifying activities, centres of responsibility and target completion dates? (4 points) Given the proposed work plan, does it appear reasonable that the project can be completed within the stated timeframe? (3 points) Given the proposed work plan, does it appear reasonable that the project can be completed within the stated timeframe? (3 points)

61 Range Descriptors outstanding excellent very good solid/significant needs revision needs major revision seriously flawed 0 not acceptable usually funded may be funded seldom funded not fundable CIHR Rating Scale

62 CIHR Standards ALL GRANTS ARE RATED on a scale from 0 to 4.9, within descriptive categories ranging from "seriously flawed" to "outstanding." Only applications rated 3.5 or higher are normally eligible for CIHR funding. ALL GRANTS ARE RATED on a scale from 0 to 4.9, within descriptive categories ranging from "seriously flawed" to "outstanding." Only applications rated 3.5 or higher are normally eligible for CIHR funding. Applications rated below 3.0 are flawed in some way, so that they do not represent a good investment of public funds. Applications rated below 3.0 are flawed in some way, so that they do not represent a good investment of public funds. The range 3.0 to 3.5 is used for applications which, while technically and conceptually acceptable, are not considered to be a high priority for CIHR funding, perhaps because the topic is not considered relevant to an important health issue, or because the work proposed seems unlikely to yield major advances in knowledge, or because the approach is not particularly innovative. The range 3.0 to 3.5 is used for applications which, while technically and conceptually acceptable, are not considered to be a high priority for CIHR funding, perhaps because the topic is not considered relevant to an important health issue, or because the work proposed seems unlikely to yield major advances in knowledge, or because the approach is not particularly innovative. Nevertheless, a proposal rated less than 3.0 may ultimately be fundable, may even be approved for funding in a resubmission, if the applicant(s) adequately addresses the reviewers' concerns. Scientific Officers are asked to encourage applicants to resubmit these proposals if this is the case. Conversely, some proposals, though initially rated highly, may be limited in their originality, potential impact, and so on, that their rating is unlikely to be increased above the competition cut-off upon resubmission, even if the applicant(s) address the reviewers' comments. Nevertheless, a proposal rated less than 3.0 may ultimately be fundable, may even be approved for funding in a resubmission, if the applicant(s) adequately addresses the reviewers' concerns. Scientific Officers are asked to encourage applicants to resubmit these proposals if this is the case. Conversely, some proposals, though initially rated highly, may be limited in their originality, potential impact, and so on, that their rating is unlikely to be increased above the competition cut-off upon resubmission, even if the applicant(s) address the reviewers' comments.

63 Common reviewer complaints Forms are not complete or completed incorrectly Forms are not complete or completed incorrectly Text is small dense and difficult to read– does not conform with formatting guidelines Text is small dense and difficult to read– does not conform with formatting guidelines Improper citations, pagination, table references and other forms of poor organization Improper citations, pagination, table references and other forms of poor organization Too much narrative with unnecessary or irrelevant information. Too much narrative with unnecessary or irrelevant information. Too much jargon Too much jargon

64 Why Proposals are Rejected University of Michigan Proposal Writer's Guide by Don Thackrey

65 Approach (73 percent) Approach (73 percent) The proposed tests, or methods, or scientific procedures are unsuited to the stated objective. (34.7) The description of the approach is too nebulous, diffuse, and lacking in clarity to permit adequate evaluation. (28.8) The overall design of the study has not been carefully thought out. (14.7) The statistical aspects of the approach have not been given sufficient consideration. (8.1) The approach lacks scientific imagination. (7.4) Controls are either inadequately conceived or inadequately described. (6.8) The material the investigator proposes to use is unsuited to the objective of the study or is difficult to obtain. (3.8) The number of observations is unsuitable. (2.5) The equipment contemplated is outmoded or otherwise unsuitable. (1.0) Why Proposals are Rejected

66 Problem (58 percent) Problem (58 percent) The problem is not of sufficient importance or is unlikely to produce any new or useful information. (33.1) The proposed research is based on a hypothesis that rests on insufficient evidence, is doubtful, or is unsound. (8.9) The problem is more complex than the investigator appears to realize. (8.1) The problem has only local significance, or is one of production or control, or otherwise fails to fall sufficiently clearly within the general field of health-related research. (4.8) The problem is scientifically premature and warrants, at most, only a pilot study. (3.1) The research as proposed is overly involved, with too many elements under simultaneous investigation. (3.0) The description of the nature of the research and of its significance leaves the proposal nebulous and diffuse and without a clear research aim. (2.6)

67 Investigator (55 percent) Investigator (55 percent) The investigator does not have adequate experience or training for this research. (32.6) The investigator appears to be unfamiliar with recent pertinent literature or methods. (13.7) The investigator's previously published work in this field does not inspire confidence. (12.6) The investigator proposes to rely too heavily on insufficiently experienced associates. (5.0) The investigator is spreading himself too thin; he will be more productive if he concentrates on fewer projects. (3.8) The investigator needs more liaison with colleagues in this field or in collateral fields. (1.7) Why Proposals are Rejected

68 Other (16 percent) Other (16 percent) The requirements for equipment or personnel are unrealistic. (10.1) It appears that other responsibilities would prevent devotion of sufficient time and attention to this research. (3.0) The institutional setting is unfavorable. (2.3) Research grants to the investigator, now in force, are adequate in scope and amount to cover the proposed research. (1.5) Why Proposals are Rejected

69 The Rejected Proposal Review comments Review comments Identify areas for improvement Identify areas for improvement Make changes Make changes Resubmit to the same or another funding agency Resubmit to the same or another funding agency You might have a better chance of obtaining an award with subsequent submissions, but….. You might have a better chance of obtaining an award with subsequent submissions, but…..

70 ……you have to be in the game to win!

71 Practical Exercise

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