This Notice was RESCINDED on July 14, 2021, please see NOT-CA-21-096 that replaces it.


RESCINDED - Revised and Corrected Notice on Policy Regarding Minimum Level of Effort for NCI-Funded Awards

Notice Number: NOT-CA-20-047

Key Dates
Release Date: April 8, 2020 (Rescinded July 14, 2021)

Related Announcements

Issued by
National Cancer Institute (NCI)


This Notice describes the NCI’s policy on the minimum level of effort that will be a part of the funding consideration for NCI-funded grants.

Please note that this Notice rescinds and replaces similar information that was previously published (on March 3, 2020) in NOT-CA-20-033, "Notice on Policy Regarding Minimum Level of Effort for NCI-Funded Awards".

Therefore, effective immediately, on publication of this Notice (NOT-CA-20-047), the previous Notice (NOT-CA-20-033) is rescinded and is no longer valid!

In addition to previously established policies for specific grant mechanisms that have been described in funding opportunity announcements (FOAs), Principal Investigators (PIs), including Project Leaders on multi-project grants, will be required to commit a minimum level of effort to be eligible for NCI funding through R01, U01, P01, and R21 grant mechanisms. Effective immediately, competing applications that do not meet the minimum criteria will not be considered for funding unless the level of effort is raised to comply with the policy. In addition, a request to reduce the PI’s level of effort in subsequent years of funding will not be approved if the proposed level of effort falls below the minimum level. The minimum effort policy described in this notice will not apply when the grant is in a no-cost extension.

Requisite levels of effort for grant mechanisms not listed in this table are stipulated in the FOA. Grant mechanisms without levels of effort listed in the table or stipulated in the FOA do not have a minimum requirement, e.g. R03, R15, etc.

Unless otherwise stated in an FOA, the minimum levels of effort are as follows:



Minimum Level of Effort in person months/year (%)


Single PI

1.8 months (15%)


1.2 months (10%) each


Single PI

1.2 months (10%)2


0.96 months (8%) each

Project PI

1.8 months (15%)

Core Leader

0.6 months (5%)3


Single or Multi-PI

0.6 months (5%) each

1If applicants lead multiple project components, the minimum level of effort is additive. For example, the minimum level of effort for an applicant serving as the PI (1.2 months) and Project PI (1.8 months) is 3 months.

2Includes effort as administrative Core Director

3Applicants should justify minimum effort, based on the proposed activities of the Core

The policy will ensure that PIs devote the appropriate effort and attention to project leadership for the duration of the grant award.


Please direct all inquiries to:

Questions regarding NCI’s implementation of this policy should be directed to the NCI Grants Management Specialist for the award. Questions of a programmatic nature should be directed to the NCI Program Official for the award.