Notice Number: NOT-OD-12-161
Update: The following update relating to this announcement has been issued:
Release Date: September 28, 2012
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
This Notice announces NIH's plans to make changes to the application process for multi-project applications. These changes include: 1) transitioning multi-project applications from the paper PHS398 grant application to the Standard Form 424 Research and Related (SF 424 R&R), and 2) simultaneously transitioning to electronic submission of these multi-project applications.Background
Since 2005, NIH has been transitioning its grant programs to electronic submission of applications through the fed-wide portal, Grants.gov, using the SF 424 (R&R) form set. In 2010, NIH completed the transition for all its grant programs, except NIH’s complex, multi-project applications.
To meet NIH’s long standing goal of receiving all grant applications electronically, NIH and the Grants.gov program management staff worked together to develop an online application system called ASSIST (Application Submission System and Interface for Submission Tracking) to accommodate electronic submission of NIH’s multi-project applications. ASSIST will allow users to develop and store their applications in a secure online environment. The system will also provide many of the features that have been requested by users over the years, such as error checking the application against both Grants.gov and many agency business rules before submission, providing the assembled application for viewing before submission, allowing applicants access control by component (subproject), and more. The Grants.gov Program Management team plans to leverage this collaborative effort to develop an online forms capability for the entire federal grants community.
Organizations that use system-to-system solutions to transmit applications via data stream to Grants.gov rather than using the Grants.gov forms will be able to send multi-project applications through Grants.gov using the same interfaces they do now. NIH and Grants.gov have made technical information on multi-project applications available for systems developers so they can plan for any system adjustments they need to make to accommodate these applications.
NIH expects that electronic submission of these applications will streamline many aspects of the grants administration process for both applicants and NIH staff.
NIH plans to transition all multi-project applications to electronic submission using the SF 424 (R&R) form set by January 2014. The transition will be done by activity code, in the same way NIH has completed previous electronic application transitions. As each activity code transitions, all applications submitted in response to funding opportunity announcements (FOAs) for programs with that activity code will require electronic submission. The pilot will include FOAs representing a variety of activity codes, however.
Initial plans/milestones are as follows:
NIH will continue to communicate transition plans as they evolve and will provide the community with ample notice of impending events.
Please direct all inquiries to:
Office of Extramural Research
National Institutes of Health