Psychologists Urged to Submit Ideas for NIH Roadmap by November 17, 2006

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) released a Request for Information (RFI) on October 20 that seeks to gather suggestions for initiatives that will be funded by the NIH Roadmap.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) released a Request for Information (RFI) on October 20 that seeks to gather suggestions for initiatives that will be funded by the NIH Roadmap. The Roadmap is a trans-institute pool of funds intended to support trans-NIH research initiatives. APA is asking all psychologists who receive NIH support to look at this RFI and submit their best ‘big' ideas for initiatives. Under the current tight NIH budget, the Roadmap is one of the few places that will see significant new money in the near-term, so it would benefit all of psychology if some of the initiatives had strong behavioral and social science components. The NIH expects to spend between $30-50 million per year from within the currently projected Roadmap budget for approximately 5-8 new 5-year (or in exceptional cases up to 10-year) initiatives.

The NIH is seeking input from the scientific community, NIH Institutes and Centers (IC), health professionals, patient advocates, and the general public about innovative and cross-cutting initiatives that will improve and accelerate biomedical research and its impact on the health of the nation. Collecting these ideas is the initial step in the process of identifying a new cohort of trans-NIH strategic initiatives for Fiscal Year 2008. The RFI provides an opportunity for respondents to submit their own ideas and to view ideas nominated to date.

All ideas for new trans-NIH strategic initiatives should meet the following criteria:

  • Is the proposed initiative truly transforming? Could it dramatically affect how biomedical and/or behavioral research is conducted over the next decade?

  • Will the outcomes from the proposed initiatives synergistically promote and advance the individual missions of the NIH institutes and centers to benefit health?

  • Does the proposed initiative require participation from NIH as a whole and/or does it address an area of science that does not clearly fall within the mission of any one IC or Office of the Director program office?

  • Is the proposed initiative something that no other entity is likely or able to do, and is there a public health benefit to having the results of the research in the public domain?

In addition to these general criteria, selection of initiatives will be based on whether the proposed programs can either be achieved within a 5-10 year time frame or can be expected to become integrated with IC funded research within that time frame. The selection will also take into consideration current research funding, with the intent of stimulating research in new or fledgling research areas that also meet the criteria stated above. The ideas should not be disease-specific and should not address problems or opportunities that fall under the purview of only one NIH institute or center.

OBSSR and some NIH institutes have already proposed a few initiatives that encompass behavioral and social sciences research, so before suggesting new ideas, please look at proposals that are already in the hopper.

The Request for Information for NIH Roadmap initiatives can be found on the NIH Grants website.

Additional information about initiatives currently funded by the Roadmap can be found at the website for the NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis and Strategic Initiatives (OPASI).

APA will submit ideas for initiatives as well, so please share your proposals via email with Pat Kobor of the Science Policy Office.