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Michael A. Taffe, Ph.D. Associate Professor Committee on the Neurobiology of Addictive Disorders The Scripps Research Institute STUDY SECTION: YOUR NEW.

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Presentation on theme: "Michael A. Taffe, Ph.D. Associate Professor Committee on the Neurobiology of Addictive Disorders The Scripps Research Institute STUDY SECTION: YOUR NEW."— Presentation transcript:

1 Michael A. Taffe, Ph.D. Associate Professor Committee on the Neurobiology of Addictive Disorders The Scripps Research Institute STUDY SECTION: YOUR NEW BEST FRIEND June 1, 2011

2 THE TWO THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW 1)The way things are supposed to work 2)The way things really work

3 IT AIN’T ABOUT “DESERVE”…. 7-8% paylines; 15-18% success rates This is not about “writing better grants” –Program Officer “incompetent review by Assoc Prof from WhereIsIt University” “the reviewer is biased against me” It is about you learning to navigate the study section process Gather data, synthesize, apply to your situation thoughtfully

4 DO YOUR HOMEWORK! How many of you can name a study section in your area? Ask your current and prior PIs which study sections review their grants Ask which Institutes and / or Centers fund their ( and your ) work if you don’t know. NIH RePORTER is your friend. Keywords New Grants (1R01%) By IC By study section By PI

5 CONSIDER THE SOURCE OF THE ADVICE Assist. Prof. in 2000 ( Not Equal to Asst Prof in 1980 or in 2011 ) 15 New, 12 Revised R01/R21 (as PI) 2000 – 2010 Biobehavioral Regulation Learning and Ethology Study Section ( Jan 05 – Jun 09) – Koob declined this panel because his experience was dated

6 “THE STUDY SECTION HATES ME….” BRLE handed Taffe ~7 triages BRLE handed Taffe 1.6%ile and 2.0%ile scores “Hey, nice to meet you at last, Dr. Taffe…glad to see you finally got your grant!” N.b. Listen when someone is trying to send you a message through summary statement ( or mutual scientific friends )

7 STUDY SECTIONS HAVE CULTURAL EXPECTATIONS Weights placed on main review criteria Bias for seniority (“we know good science will result”) Bias for novelty / innovation (“this is exciting”) They strive for “fairness” (“Hey, wait, we would usually hammer an application for this….”) Interpretation of mechanism goals (R21, R15 AREA)

8 “THE RESPONSE TO CRITIQUE IS….COMBATIVE” Assessing response to prior criticism is explicit part of review (They have Summary Statement, but not prior application!) Brandishing your C/N/S papers does not go over well Arguing the reviewers are morons does not go over well Yelling about “ERRORS” does not go over well Your audience is not your critic but rather your advocate -Give her/him the ammunition they need to make your case!

9 THE GOOD NEWS The “death knell” is never absolute…. Fewer first (or senior) author pubs than is expected Brand new Assistant Prof with no data but good idea PI that we (the study section) have never heard of PI who has changed jobs, been unproductive due to personal or family issues / demands Trust in your advocates, don’t prejudge yourself for the section.

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11 THE STUDY SECTION …and Rosters. Standing Member (4 yr) Vs Ad Hoc (per round) Can’t hurt to PubMed ‘em


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