Is feedback from a grant review seen as fair or useful?

Reputation: CC0 Public Realm

An important function of the grant review process is to provide helpful feedback to applicants for re-submission. However, little is known about whether review feedback achieves this goal.

The American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS), in collaboration with Washington State University, has published the results of a multimodal analysis of responses from grant applicants regarding their perceptions of the usefulness and appropriateness of ideas from peer review received from grant applications.

The analysis focused on responses from a study sent to more than 13,000 scientists regarding feedback from their recent funding applications (mostly from NIH and NSF). The results suggested that only 56-60% of applicants rated the feedback as appropriate (fair, well-written, and well-informed), although their judgments would be more favorable if their application would have recently been funded. Importantly, independent of funding success, women received better feedback than men, and more White applicants found the feedback to be moderately good than non-white applicants.

Less than 40% of applicants found the feedback very helpful in informing their research and developing future grants and applications. Overall, these results indicate that more effort is needed to ensure that appropriate and useful feedback is provided to all applicants. This study is in line with AIBS ‘s commitment to increasing diversity, equality, and inclusion in the biological sciences.

Influence of peer feedback on academic writing

Further information:
Stephen A. Gallo et al, Grant Review Ideas: Suitability and Necessity, Ethics Science and Engineering (2021). DOI: 10.1007 / s11948-021-00295-9

Presented by the American Institute of Biological Sciences

Citation: Is feedback from a grant survey seen as fair or useful? (2021, March 19) back March 19, 2021 from

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