Internal Deadline: Friday, March 8th, 2024, 5pm PT
LOI: June 3, 2024
External Deadline: July 1, 2024
Recurring Deadlines: July 1, 2025 (June 2, 2025 LOI); July 1, 2026 (June 1, 2026 LOI)
Award Type: Grant
Estimated Number of Awards: The number of awards is contingent upon NIH appropriations and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications.
Anticipated Award Amount: Direct costs will be limited up to $250,000 per year. The maximum award project period is 3 years for Highly Resourced Institutions (HRIs), and 4 years for Limited-Resourced Institutions (LRIs).
Who May Serve as PI:
Applications are required to establish multiple principal investigators allowing multidisciplinary expertise within the leadership team, for example, a social or behavioral scientist for survey methodology expertise. The institutions/organizations should visit the Multiple Program Director/Principal Investigator Policy and submission details in the Senior/Key Person Profile (Expanded) Component of the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.
One of the principal investigators must be a Senior Institutional Official (SIO) who provides leadership for planning, developing, and evaluating outcomes. The SIO is envisioned as a senior-level administrator such as a Dean, Provost, Vice-President, or President who is expected to work with the Faculty Senate seeking its support for implementing the plan and also will serve as an effective advocate for faculty research and research training and is likely to have direct knowledge of financial and personnel resources and the institution s research and professional integrity. These are conditions that are critical for the success of an institutional climate assessment and action plan.
Link to Award: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-24-038.html
Process for Limited Submissions
PIs must submit their application as a Limited Submission through the Research Initiatives and Infrastructure (RII) Application Portal: https://rii.usc.edu/oor-portal/. Use the template provided here: RII Limited Submission Applicant Template
Materials to submit include:
- (1) Two-Page Proposal Summary (1” margins; single-spaced; standard font type, e.g. Arial, Helvetica, Times New Roman, or Georgia typeface; font size: 11 pt). Page limit includes references and illustrations. Pages that exceed the 2-page limit will be excluded from review. You must use the template linked above.
- (2) CV – (5 pages maximum)
Note: The portal requires information about the PIs in addition to department and contact information, including the 10-digit USC ID#, Gender, and Ethnicity. Please have this material prepared before beginning this application.
The objective of this Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) is to solicit applications to conduct institutional climate assessments using validated instruments and to develop action plans to create an inclusive and equitable environment in the recruitment, hiring, and advancement of faculty, including those from groups underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research (see the NIH Notice of Interest in Diversity).
These plans for self-studies should lead to institutional culture change by identifying perceptions, attitudes, and concerns, for example, inequities, micro-aggressions, institutional racism, and bias, and provide a foundation for the development of an action plan to enhance diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) in the hiring and advancement of faculty.
This NOFO will support the following activities to:
- Conduct surveys to assess the extent to which institutional climate impacts the recruitment, retention, and advancement of faculty, including those underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research, using existing validated instruments
- Using the survey data, analyze institutional climate and structure change needs; and
- Develop action plans for institutional climate and structure change to enhance DEIA in recruiting faculty and advancing their careers
Applications should provide baseline data about the institutional characteristics in terms of faculty as well as leadership composition (by gender, race and ethnicity, disability, faculty rank, etc.). Applicants should discuss prior efforts, including institutional climate surveys they may have already conducted. They should highlight any plans and outcomes that have arisen from these assessments, and state how earlier data complement the goals of the current application. It is critical to explain how this new proposal will either build upon or be differentiated from prior work.
This NOFO will accept applications from eligible Highly Resourced Institutions (HRIs) and Limited-Resourced Institutions (LRIs).
Please note that LRIs are eligible for an additional year of funding (for a maximum of four years). For this funding announcement, to qualify as an LRI, institutions must:
- have received less than $50 million average in annual NIH funds within the three years before the time of application, and
- offer doctorate degrees in biomedical sciences, the health professions, or a health-related science, and
- have a documented historical commitment to educating underrepresented students, and,
- if institutions provide clinical health care services, those services must be provided to medically underserved communities.
These criteria are similar to the Research Centers in Minority Institutions criteria, the NIH Common Fund s FIRST program, and other independent programs. HRIs are institutions that do not meet the LRI criteria.
Use of an Existing Validated Survey Instrument
This existing validated survey can evaluate the overall university, or individual schools or colleges within the university.
Results of this survey are expected to provide insights into current environment and practices, and lead to the development of data-driven action plans to better support a diverse faculty by mitigating challenges and reinforcing strengths.
The application will provide evidence of the validated nature of the survey instrument from the published literature, including, but not limited to, peer-reviewed literature. In addition, applicants should explain how the proposed validated survey instrument is appropriate for faculty assessment at the institution, as described above.
Each grantee institution will be responsible for data collection (qualitative and quantitative) that allow for scientifically accurate inferences on institutional climate using a validated survey instrument. The data analysis of the survey results should result in the development of an action plan as described in the Program Objective.
Action Plan Outcomes
The funding of these proposals should lead to the development of institutional action plans. The action plans could include interventions that address institutional systemic cultural and structural barriers rather than quick-fix solutions.
Structural inequities may exist in an institution’s practices and policies that can lead to differential treatment of faculty and potentially impacting promotion and tenure decisions. Without evaluating these practices and policies and addressing potential issues of implicit bias, institutions may perpetuate a climate that is not inclusive. Action plans can be a catalyst for institutions to enhance their climate and promote an atmosphere that fosters inclusivity in the recruitment, retention, and advancement for all faculty by developing a plan that incorporates a systemic approach that identifies, adapts, and implements the practices and policies that best support an inclusive institutional climate.
Thus, elements of action plans could include but are not limited to:
- Establishing accountability practices to hold institutional leaders responsible for creating and sustaining inclusive faculty environments
- Ensuring funding for institution-based DEIA initiatives
- Evaluating allocation of resources and services to ensure inclusion and equality
- Availing opportunities for leadership positions within the institution for all faculty, including those from underrepresented groups
- Developing of training programs to enhance the sustainability of the action plan
- Providing resources to remove barriers and challenges confronting people with disabilities (for example, ableism frameworks, ableist language, attitudinal and discriminatory practices etc.) that prevent or impede faculty with disabilities from succeeding
- Developing approaches to enhance adaptive technology to increase accessibility and assist faculty with temporary or permanent disabilities
- Identifying strategies to reduce discrimination
- Mitigating implicit bias
Visit our Institutionally Limited Submission webpage for more updates and other announcements.