CIHR: Update on the Project Grant: Fall 2016 competition

April 4, 2017

The first stage of peer review for the Project Grant: Fall 2016 competition is now complete. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the reviewers involved in Stage 1, and we would also like to give the research community a brief update about the competition overall.

There were 2884 applications submitted to the competition, which means that the Stage 1 peer review process involved more than 12,000 reviews from 1331 dedicated peer reviewers. The Competition Chairs, Scientific Officers, and Early Career Investigators conducted a review quality assurance exercise, and we are very pleased to report that the vast majority of reviews were excellent. In any case where the quality of the review was of concern to a Competition Chair and that review negatively affected the status of an otherwise competitive application, the application was moved to Stage 2 to be discussed in the face-to-face meeting.

As noted in the Peer Review Manual, we committed to move approximately 40% of the applications on to Stage 2. In the end, 43% of the applications were selected to move forward, based on whether they:

  • were within the top-ranking ~30 per cent across clusters;
  • were within the top ~30 percent within their cluster;
  • had large discrepancies between reviews; or
  • were flagged by Competition Chairs (and weren’t already captured using the methodology above).

In addition, all applications in the Indigenous Health Research cluster are moving to Stage 2.

All Project Grant applicants received a notification regarding the status of their application during the week of March 20, 2017. As noted in previous communications, this notification did not include the written reviews or ranking information and could only indicate whether or not an application would be moving to Stage 2 of peer review. The full reviews and official decision documents will only be available to all applicants at the end of the competition, as planned. The timelines for the competition are available on our website.

The next stage in the Project Grant competition involves the face-to-face review meetings taking place from April 19 to May 5. After these meetings take place, the final funding decisions will be made.

We will continue to keep the community informed as the second stage of the competition unfolds.


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