New NIH Post-submission Materials Guidelines

A glacier cave located on the Perito Moreno Glacier in Argentina. (Photo credit: Martin St-Amant – Wikipedia – CC-BY-SA-3.0)

While the focus of my job is the time period before the application deadline, I do spend a considerable amount of time managing clients’ expectations and anxieties in that time between application submission and review. The timescale of grants can seem glacial to those who are new to the grant funding process, and so much can happen in the career of a researcher or to a research project between the time a grant application is submitted and the time it is reviewed. This applies equally to academic researchers and private sector researchers, because, although the SBIR/STTR timeline is shorter than the R01 timeline, for example, small businesses tend to have less of a financial cushion and a tighter timeline than academic research programs. When something good (promotion! publication!) or bad (loss of an animal colony due to natural disaster) happens, what can you do? Most people do presume that they can (and should!) contact the agency in the case of a natural disaster, but are at a loss over the ability to communicate less dramatic happenings, like publication. What many applicants don’t realize is that there is a mechanism by which they may update their applications post-submission. This is the topic of today’s blog, so take a deep cleansing breath, release that anxiety, and read on.

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