Important Guidance from U.S. Federal Agencies in Aftermath of Government Shutdown
The U.S. government shutdown in October has caused federal agencies to rush to meet grant review timelines. Information compiled on SfN.org provides relevant progress reports and deadlines for scientists and researchers whose two-part grant application processes were interrupted by the 16-day shutdown.
The website includes a link to updated NIH Guidance explaining the revised procedures. The shutdown delayed 200-plus peer review meetings, impacting the review of more than 11,000 applications that had been scheduled for October first-level peer review meetings on grants funding an extensive variety of research projects. The NIH Guidance reports that those meetings are being rescheduled as soon as possible, to enable most applications to stay on schedule and still be considered when the advisory council conducts the final review in January.
Story Landis, director of the National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), said November 10 during Neuroscience 2013, that staff members and outside grant reviewers are working as quickly as possible in order to ensure there are no more delays.
“NIH is scrambling so there can be assessments of the submitted grants in time for the January councils,” Landis said. “If NIH staff and reviewers had not done that, it would have been June before many of the grants were able to be reviewed by council, which would have slowed everything down significantly.”
Many other application deadlines have been extended, and the effects of the shutdown might be felt in subsequent grant review cycles. “People are creating ‘lessons learned,’ but there will be scars,” Landis said.
The SfN.org page at SfN.org/shutdown also includes links to revised proposal deadlines and frequently asked questions for the NSF grant process, which addresses how the shutdown affected proposals submitted through both the Fastlane.nsf.gov and Grants.gov websites.
Visit the News and Statements tab on the page to find up-to-date analysis and news articles regarding the recovery from the shutdown and how it might affect valuable research projects that rely on government support.