Grant Review

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How Grants are Reviewed

All submitted funding applications undergo a two-step peer review process by outside scientific experts. In the first step, your grant application will be reviewed by a study section organized by NIH’s Center for Scientific Review or NIDDK. The study section will assign numeric priority ratings to your application based on its scientific merit and feasibility. Specific criteria for review can be found in the funding announcement for your grant.

In the second step, the NIDDK's National Advisory Council approves the study section's recommendations. This process is mandated by U.S. law.

Tracking an Application

Information specific to your application, including your Program Official assignment, will be posted to your eRA Commons account throughout its review.

Grant Application Appeals

NIH has a formal process to resolve disagreements between applicants and NIH review committees and/or NIH staff concerning the peer review of grant applications (see NOT-OD-11-064).

Applicants are strongly advised to speak with the NIDDK Program Official (PO) responsible for the application before they submit an appeal.

  • Applicants should contact the appropriate NIDDK PO—listed in the Notice of Funding Opportunity Announcement and in the upper left-hand corner of the first page of the summary statement—regarding their application.
  • The PO can explain options available and is often able to help the applicant understand the study section's recommendation. In most cases, issues can be resolved at this stage.

Appeal Letter Requirements

For those cases that cannot be resolved by discussion, the first step in the appeals process is the submission of a formal appeal letter following the process and guidance in NOT-OD-11-064. Appeal letters, countersigned from the organization/business official, should be sent to the NIDDK PO assigned to the application. Appeal letters must be received after the summary statement is released and within 30 days of the Council meeting where secondary review of the application occurs.

Appeal letters that are received fewer than 30 calendar days before the applicable NIDDK Council meeting will likely be deferred to the next Council meeting for consideration.

Become an NIDDK Reviewer

NIDDK looks for reviewers at different career stages with a wide variety of scientific expertise.

Submit your CV

Benefits include:

  • Giving back to the scientific community
  • Staying abreast of the current state of the science
  • Improving your own grant applications by being familiar with the process
Last Reviewed October 2023