June 29, 2016

Second Part of Report on Federal Research Regulations Issued

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine has released Part 2 of the report Optimizing the Nation’s Investment in Academic Research: A New Regulatory Framework for the 21st Century.

The report, issued on June 29, 2016 by the Committee on Federal Research Regulations and Reporting Requirements, contains the full contents of Part 1, first released in September 2015 as a separate publication.

The report “reviews the federal regulatory framework for research institutions as it currently exists, considers specific regulations that have placed undue and often unanticipated burdens on the research enterprise, and reassesses the process by which these regulations are created, reviewed, and retired. It identifies specific actions Congress, the White House, federal agencies, and research institutions should take to reduce regulatory burden.”

June 30, 2016 update: The Council on Governmental Relations (COGR), Association of American Universities (AAU), and Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) have released a joint statement on the report, related to shared concerns regarding the recent Common Rule Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for the treatment of human subjects in research. COGR plans to issue a full analysis in the coming weeks.

September 23, 2015 Research Advocate: New Report on Regulation of Federally Funded Research

June 24, 2016

NSF Award Terms and Conditions Revised

The National Science Foundation Policy Office in the Division of Institution and Award Support has announced that the NSF Award Terms and Conditions have been revised to implement the requirements stipulated in Appendix XII to Part 200 of 2 CFR § 200 (Uniform Guidance) regarding the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS), as well as other clarifications to the conditions.

The revised Terms and Conditions will apply to all new NSF awards and funding amendments to existing NSF awards issued on or after July 1, 2016.

Revisions have been made to the following:
  • Grant General Conditions (GC-1);
  • Cooperative Agreement Conditions:
    • Cooperative Agreement Financial and Administrative Terms and Conditions (CA-FATC),
    • Cooperative Agreement Supplemental Financial and Administrative Terms and Conditions for Managers of Large Facilities,
    • Cooperative Agreement Supplemental Financial and Administrative Terms and Conditions for Managers of Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCS);
  • Special Conditions:
    • International Research Terms and Conditions,
    • Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I Grant General Conditions,
    • Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase II Grant General Conditions, and
    • Administration of NSF Conference or Group Travel Grant Special Conditions (FL 26).

June 17, 2016

PIs Can Now Request Early Review of NIH COI Disclosures

The current process for review of complete positive financial disclosures for new National Institutes of Health proposals by the Conflict of Interest (COI) Committee has been to conduct that review at the time a Just-In-Time (JIT) request arrives from NIH. As JIT is generally some indication that the project may be funded, review at this juncture alleviated some of the burden on the COI Committee for review of all NIH positive disclosures at the proposal stage, when a significant percentage of those proposals are not funded. For funders that do not have an equivalent JIT process (e.g., NSF) review of complete disclosures has always been conducted right after the proposal is submitted. However, beginning on June 20, the COI Committee will conduct early review for new NIH projects with complete positive financial disclosures, at the request of the Principal Investigator. Any request for early review should be sent to researchcoi@berkeley.edu.

June 15, 2016

New COI Review and Approval Process

On June 1, the COI Committee began a new review and approval process for all complete non-substantive PHS (specifically including those which are unchanged or unrelated) and NSF financial disclosures, and for State 700-U disclosures that meet certain specified expedited review criteria. All such disclosures are now reviewed and approved on a rolling weekly basis, leaving the monthly COI Committee meeting for deliberation of more complex and/or complicated cases.

This new process will allow the Sponsored Projects Office to set-up many awards more quickly, and Donor and Gift Services to more quickly make gift funds available.

Approval letters will be issued via email from the COI office every Monday or Tuesday. In all cases, the COI office will copy the CSS RA identified with the individual who filed the disclosure, unless another contact is identified.

Please address any questions to COI Coordinator Jyl Baldwin at jbaldwin@berkeley.edu or researchcoi.berkeley.edu.

June 10, 2016

NIH Fellowship Application Problem

Today, June 10, 2016, the National Institutes of Health informed the research community that there is a temporary issue with the application form packages associated with the fellowship funding opportunity announcements listed in the NIH Guide Notice Form Correction Made for All NIH Fellowship Opportunities (NOT-OD-16-106).

The application forms packages posted with these opportunities on June 3, 2016 included an incorrect version of the PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form. This posting error was corrected the evening of June 7, 2016.

Anyone who started a grant application for any of these opportunities prior to June 8, 2016 must return to the funding opportunity announcement and begin again.

The ASSIST system recognized the posting issue and prevented users from initiating an application with the incorrect form package. If you attempted to initiate an application prior to June 8 and received an error, you can now safely initiate your application.