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Funding Policy & Scientific Review

Funding Policy

NCATS gives priority to resources and projects that catalyze innovation in translational science and enable the biomedical research community to realize the potential of science to deliver tangible improvements in human health. Individual consideration is given to each grant application. Final award decisions are based on a variety of criteria, including scientific merit, program relevance and balance, responsiveness to the Center’s priorities, and availability of funds.

Choose a fiscal year:


Fiscal Year 2017

Continuing Resolution

NCATS is operating under a continuing resolution through April 28, 2017. See NIH notice NOT-OD-17-048: NIH Operates Under a Continuing Resolution. Legislative mandates continue.

Fiscal Year 2016

Competing Awards

Competing grants will be funded at levels based on programmatic and Office of Grants Management funding recommendations.

Non-Competing Awards

NCATS non-competing grants will be awarded at 100 percent of the committed level.

Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards will continue to be awarded under the provisions of NOT-OD-15-048 until further notice.

Non-competing awards previously issued in fiscal year 2016 under the continuing resolution at 90 percent of the committed level will be revised to restore funds to the committed level.

Legislative mandates in effect for fiscal year 2016 are listed in NOT-OD-16-044, published on Dec. 25, 2015, and corrected in NOT-OD-16-048, published on Dec. 30, 2015.

Salaries remain prohibited above Executive Level II under grants and other extramural mechanisms as announced in NOT-OD-16-045, published on Dec. 24, 2015; however, Executive Level II increased from $183,300 to $185,100, effective Jan. 10, 2016.

Fiscal Year 2015

Competing Awards

Competing grants will be funded at levels based on programmatic and Office of Grants Management funding recommendations.

Non-Competing Awards

NCATS non-competing grants will be awarded at 100 percent of the committed level with the exception of Discovering New Therapeutic Uses for Existing Molecules program grants, which may be awarded at a reduction of no more than 3 percent from the committed level. Future year commitments will remain unchanged.

Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards will be awarded under the provisions of NOT-OD-15-048, that is, at the requested/committed level while increasing the undergraduate and graduate student stipends by 2 percent on average. Entry-level postdoctoral stipends will be increased to $42,840.

Non-competing awards previously issued in fiscal year 2015 under the continuing resolution at 90 percent of the committed level will be revised to restore funds to the committed level.

Salaries remain prohibited above Executive Level II under grants and other extramural mechanisms; however, Executive Level II was increased by 1 percent from $181,500 to $183,300, effective Jan. 11, 2015.

Fiscal Year 2014

Competing Awards

Competing grants were funded at levels based on programmatic and Office of Grants Management funding recommendations.

Non-Competing Awards

Non-competing grants (other than Centers) were awarded at a reduction of no more than 3 percent from the committed level. Non-competing Center grants were awarded at a reduction of no more than 5 percent from the committed level. Future year commitments remained unchanged. This policy applied to all grants except Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards, which increased undergraduate and graduate student stipends by 2 percent. Entry-level postdoctoral stipends were increased to $42,000 with 4 percent increases between the individual levels of experience.

Non-competing awards previously issued in fiscal year 2014 under the continuing resolution at 90 percent of the committed level were revised to restore funds to the committed level.

Salaries remained prohibited above Executive Level II under grants and other extramural mechanisms; however, Executive Level II was increased by 1 percent from $179,700 to $181,500, effective Jan. 12, 2014.

Fiscal Year 2013

Competing Awards

NIH operated at a reduced program level for fiscal year 2013. As a result, NCATS issued competing grants at appropriate levels based on programmatic and Office of Grants Management funding recommendations.

Non-Competing Awards

Non-competing grants — excluding Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards, institutional career awards, conference grants and Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer grants — were awarded at a reduction of no more than 6–8 percent from the committed level. Future year commitments remained unchanged. Non-competing awards previously issued in fiscal year 2013 under the continuing resolution were revised to restore funds to the appropriate level based on the fiscal year 2013 funding policy.