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Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research

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Description and Application Guidance

Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PDs and PIs) holding specific types of National Institutes of Health (NIH) research grants may be eligible for administrative supplement funding (see the full program announcement) to improve the diversity of the research workforce by recruiting and supporting students, postdoctorates, and eligible investigators from diverse backgrounds, including those from groups that have been shown to be underrepresented in health-related research. This supplement opportunity is also available to PDs/PIs of research grants who are or become disabled and need additional support to accommodate their disability in order to continue to work on the research project. Administrative supplements must support work within the scope of the original project.

This funding opportunity is designed specifically for applicants proposing research that does not involve leading an independent clinical trial, a clinical trial feasibility study, or an ancillary clinical trial. Applicants to this funding opportunity are permitted to propose research experience in a clinical trial led by a mentor or co-mentor. This funding opportunity is designed to provide support for research experiences for individuals from diverse backgrounds throughout the continuum from high school to the faculty level. The proposed research experience must be an integral part of the approved, ongoing research of the parent award, and it must have the potential to contribute significantly to the research career development of the candidate.

Detailed eligibility criteria are described in the full program announcement. Also see the Notice of NIH’s Interest in Diversity (November 22, 2019). Specific application guidance includes the following:

  • The institution/university of the PI determines, justifies, and certifies the eligibility of the candidate based on the Notice of NIH's Interest in Diversity.
  • The PI of the NIDCD-funded award prepares the supplement application with input from the candidate.
  • Typically, supplements are provided for one year, with a strong justification required for a second year.
  • The application must clearly describe the need for additional mentored research training.
  • The research strategy section in the application must include the following subheadings:
    • Career development plan: The PI should include details of specific activities and milestones to be accomplished during the supplement duration. For predoctoral fellows, postdoctoral fellows, and medical students, a plan to transition to NIH mainstream research training and/or research funding should be provided
    • Mentoring research plan: The PI should describe the specific activities planned for the candidate during the supplement period and the PI’s previous training and mentoring experience.
  • For high school, undergraduate, postbaccalaureate, master’s, predoctoral students (including Au.D. and medical students), and postdoctoral fellows, the application should include a biosketch for the candidate using the NIH fellowship biosketch format.
  • The parent award must have an active budget that is at least equivalent to the duration of the requested supplement and should not be in (or go into) a no-cost extension.
  • Typically, NIDCD allows one supplement per parent award to support one candidate. Possible exceptions will be considered for exceptional PIs and candidates with a strong justification and with support from the program official assigned to the parent award.
  • Supplements are limited to candidates who are citizens or non-citizen nationals of the U.S. or to candidates who have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the U.S. (i.e., in possession of a Permanent Resident Card, Form I-551).
  • Candidates supported on a research award (such as an R01) may not be transferred to a supplement to increase the availability of funds to the parent award for other uses.
  • Candidates may be temporarily supported by the parent award while the application is under reviewed.
  • Discussions of the supplement request with the program officer assigned to the parent award are highly encouraged to make sure that the proposed project falls within the scope of the parent award.
  • NIDCD accepts applications on a rolling basis.

For application guidance and additional information on administrative supplements to promote diversity in NIDCD-supported research, please contact Alberto Rivera-Rentas.

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