Research and Funding

Division of Extramural Activities

Program Project (P01) Policies and Guidelines

Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA): PAR-13-258

Resubmission and Revision applications (FOA): PAR-13-329

With the above FOAs investigators now need to submit electronic versions of program projects starting with applications submitted for the September 25, 2013 submission deadline. As the FOAs instruct, use the ASSIST technology to submit applications. The ASSIST site provides extensive training materials and a detailed user guide to help submit the application. Especially for the initial September 25 date, plan to submit well ahead of the deadline because the deadline is exactly that and the later the application is submitted the less chance there is to overcome glitches or fix errors.

NIA now accepts both RESUBMISSION and REVISION (competing supplement) applications on the September 25 date. NIA does not accept original submissions (new or renewing P01s) on the September 25 date. Use PAR-13-329 if submitting on September 25. New, renewing, and resubmitting applications may use PAR-13-258 for the January 25 and May 25 submission deadlines. Revision applications should use PAR-13-329 for all deadlines.

Two-Stage Review of Program Project (P01) applications

Starting with the submission date of Jan 25, 2016, Program Project Grant (PPG) applications will undergo a two stage review process in order help achieve a uniform and fair review across applications.

  • The first stage will be a special emphasis panel comprised of experts in the subject area and they will provide a written critique and final score for individual projects and cores. This stage is substantially similar to our current model for reviewing program projects.
  • The second stage review will be by a parent program project committee including current and recent program project directors and other senior researchers. This committee will provide an overall impact score taking in to consideration assessment of the likelihood for the project to exert a sustained, powerful influence on the research field(s) involved. A member (preferably the chair) of the first stage review panel will report the summary of the proceedings of the initial panel at the beginning of the review. The overall impact score will be released following the review by the second stage review.
  • Every effort will be made to review the applications within the given council round but on rare occasions some of the applications may be deferred to the following council, but still within the same fiscal year.

Cost Guidelines on P01 Applications

As stated in PAR-13-258 and PAR-13-329, NIA rarely funds program project awards with any annual budget of more than $1.5 million, in direct costs (F&A costs of subcontracts excluded). Budget increases in non-competing years will reflect NIH policy in effect for the year of the non-competing continuation and may be requested to reflect an anticipated inflationary 3% annual increase only. P01 applications requesting more than $1.5 million in any year must be nominated for acceptance by an NIA program division and approved by an NIA senior committee to be accepted.

Revision applications (see PAR-13-329) may request costs that would increase the total direct costs of the awarded P01 to more than $1.5 million in a single year. Revision applications may be submitted only after the parent P01 has been awarded and may not propose costs beyond the end of the parent award.

NIA has implemented cost control measures for applications requesting $500,000 or more in direct costs in a single year. These measures are described at:

It is particularly important for applicants considering program project submissions to contact program division staff as early as possible in the development of the project and at least six weeks before the intended submission.

Changes in the Content of Submissions with the Transition to Electronic Submission

  • NIA now permits multi-P.D./P.I. submissions both for the overall program project and for the individual cores and projects within the P01. The FOAs give guidance on how to add a leadership plan for the particular elements which have multi-P.I.s.
  • Personnel may now submit only one biosketch even though the same individual may serve multiple roles on the overall program project. Therefore the paragraph describing the capabilities of the individual must address all roles proposed in the program project.

Change in NIA Review Policy concerning Investigator Presence in Review Meetings.

NIA has followed a practice in review of arranging for the investigator team who submitted a program project application to be on call during the review meeting for the application. Reviewers had the opportunity to ask questions of investigators during the meeting. Reviewers rarely took that opportunity. Also, perhaps unfairly NIA had extended this practice to review of program project applications but not to review of other large applications considered singly. For these reasons NIA is terminating the practice of having investigators be on call during the review meeting. Details of the relevant new policy are available at: