Grant Applications Requesting $500,000 or More in Direct Costs for Any Project Year

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This document describes the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) implementation of the NIH policy requiring grant applications that request $500,000 or more in direct costs in any one year (excluding consortium F&A costs) to obtain documented approval from the Institute stating that it will accept the application for initial peer review. This applies to new, resubmission, renewal, and revision applications.

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Prospective applicants should refer to Section IV (Application and Submission Information) of the individual Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to which they are responding for detailed information about applications requesting $500,000 or more in direct costs in any project year. FOAs that do not have budgetary limits will include language instructing applicants requesting $500,000 or more in direct costs in any one year to contact Institute staff to seek agreement to accept assignment of the application. This document describes the procedures and information required for an NIDCR decision to accept or decline such an application.

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To request that the NIDCR accept assignment of an application requesting direct costs of $500,000 or more in any one year, a potential applicant must:

  1. Contact a NIDCR Scientific/Research Contact listed on the FOA of interest at least 6 weeks before submitting the application and describe the proposed research project via email or a conference call (i.e., Staff Consultation).
  2. Submit Supporting Information to the NIDCR at least 5 weeks before submitting the application.
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Staff Consultation

The Staff Consultation is the first step in requesting approval to submit an application with direct costs of $500,000 or more in any one year, and it must occur at least 6 weeks before submitting the grant application. It is a discussion between the NIDCR Scientific/Research Contact (Program Official) listed on the FOA of interest and the potential Principal Investigator (and other potential Key Personnel, if interested) to describe the proposed research project. The Scientific/Research Contact may request information prior to the discussion, such as the proposed Specific Aims and an overview of the proposed research project. The Staff Consultation: (1) ensures that the NIDCR receives applications that are scientifically aligned with the Institute’s mission and strategic vision, and (2) enables the Institute to consider the budgetary impact of supporting such a project.

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Supporting Information

After the Staff Consultation, the potential applicant(s) must submit Supporting Information to the NIDCR at least 5 weeks before submitting the grant application. This Supporting Information serves as the formal request to submit an application with direct costs of $500,000 or more in any one year. The formal request may be submitted via one of the following:

  • Submit the request electronically (via email) through the applicant’s business office to the NIDCR Scientific/Research Contact with whom the Staff Consultation took place, or
  • Submit the request through eRA Commons, in the Prior Approval module.

For the NIDCR to make an informed decision about whether to accept a proposed application for initial peer review, the Supporting Information must include:

  1. Intended application submission date
  2. An overview of the proposed research: Significance, specific aims, study design, overview of study procedures and data to be collected/analyzed
  3. Scientific justification for accepting the application; degree to which the proposed research represents a unique research opportunity; and/or addresses important knowledge gaps
  4. Actual or estimated budget (direct and total costs) for the primary institution and each consortium (subcontract), including subcontract F&A (if any), for all years of the proposed grant. This information should be presented in a table and should include budget categories.
  5. Justification for the size of the proposed budget in terms of the actual costs of the research
  6. Documented attempts to contain the budget
  7. Plans for addressing the NIH Policy on Resource Sharing
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Notification of NIDCR Decision

Within two to five weeks of receipt of the Supporting Information, the NIDCR will notify the applicant via email about its decision to accept or decline an application to submit for peer review.

Please note: Granting permission to submit the application for review does not guarantee funding.  Funding decisions are made based on the outcome of scientific peer review, the scientific and technical merits of the application, programmatic priorities and availability of funds.

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Submitting the Application

To facilitate receipt of the application, applicants should include a cover letter with the application stating that the NIDCR has granted approval to submit the application and identifying the NIDCR Program staff member(s) who communicated NIDCR’s approval of submission. The Total Direct Costs less Consortium F&A in the application must not exceed the amount the NIDCR agreed to accept. 

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Last Reviewed
November 2019