Let's lighten up peer review: NIH

NIH needs to make life easier for everyone involved in the peer review process - a not surprising conclusion of the agency's peer review working group, which it announced today (February 21) after reviewing thousands of suggestions from stakeholders. Broadly, the recommendations include: -Reduce the administrative burden of applicants, reviewers and NIH staff: Give applicants unambiguous feedback about whether to resubmit or develop a new idea (including the option "NRR'- not recommended for r

Alison McCook
Feb 20, 2008
NIH needs to make life easier for everyone involved in the peer review process - a not surprising conclusion of the agency's peer review working group, which it announced today (February 21) after reviewing thousands of suggestions from stakeholders. Broadly, the recommendations include: -Reduce the administrative burden of applicants, reviewers and NIH staff: Give applicants unambiguous feedback about whether to resubmit or develop a new idea (including the option "NRR'- not recommended for resubmission), give all applications ratings, pilot the use of "prebuttals" from applicants so they can correct any factual errors by reviewers. In addition, the working group suggested that amended applications lose their "special status," and be considered as "new", meaning applicants no longer need to respond to or incorporate reviewers' suggestions, and reviewers no longer have to look over previous reviewers' comments. -Improve the rating system, review and reviewer quality: Shorten the application (to an as-yet-unspecified length),...

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