Prof-like Substance has found a new forum:

Funding for science is tight right now. No one knows that more than I and the stack of rejected grant proposals I have on my desk. For a lot of people the shifting climate sucks and for new people it can be be painful to get one’s foot in the door. But, is this in itself proof positive that The System is broken? Aureliano Buendia* thinks so.
This morning I was sent a link to a new forum for discussing the “problems” with NSF and what can be done to fix it. Specifically, the creator of the forum states its purpose as discussing “What problems have you had with NSF? What creative solutions have you come up with to these problems? The forum is designed to address such issues. Let’s bring out our best ideas, and hope that NSF pays attention.”

Head over to Prof-like’s place for the link to the (currently) open forum of NSF whingery.


It has dawned on me that the recent limitation of NIH grant applications to a single revision round (previously it was two) may have some implications for competing continuation applications. These are currently termed “renewals” and as NIAID advises:

To reestablish funding, you have two choices. You can renew your current grant, called a renewal, or submit a “new” application.
Your situation and the science dictate which route is most advantageous.

Hmm, no big deal, right? As long as the money is the same and your lab is doing whatever you wanted to do in the first place who cares if it is a new grant or competing renewal?
Trouble is, people care. It is an explicit tenure criterion at some places (and an explicit or implicit promotional criterion past tenure) that renewing the NIH award is a GoodThing and Better than merely keeping an equal amount of funding flowing for the same approximate research domain.
This is utterly stupid in my view but such is life. The question is whether changes in the way NIH is doing business significantly alters the prospects for landing competing continuation applications.

Read the rest of this entry »