Notice of Change to NIH’s Policy on Special Council Review of Research Applications
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:

February 17, 2022

Related Announcements

NOT-MH-22-190 - Modifications to the NIMH Special Council Review Procedures

NOT-OD-12-140 - Notice of NIH Special Council Review of Research Applications from PDs/PIs with More than $1.0 Million Direct Costs in Annual NIH Support

NOT-OD-21-169 - New NIH "FORMS-G" Grant Application Forms and Instructions Coming for Due Dates on or after January 25, 2022

Issued by



This Notice announces an update to the Special Council Review (SCR) policy in an effort to align SCR policy with updated Other Support disclosure requirements (see NOT-OD-21-169) and to increase the threshold from $1 million in direct costs, per year to $2 million in total costs (inclusive of direct and indirect), per year. This policy does not represent a cap on NIH funding.


In September 2012, NIH issued its SCR policy which requires Institute and Center Advisory Councils to provide additional review of grant and cooperative agreement applications from PD(s)/PI(s) who receive $1 million in direct costs, per year to determine if additional funds should be provided to already well-supported investigators. The main change from the existing policy is that the threshold will reflect total costs rather than direct costs and therefore the threshold for an SCR will be increased from $1 million in direct costs to $2 million in total costs (inclusive of direct and indirect), per year for all active NIH awards.


Effective with the FY 2022 May/June Council round, Advisory Council members will continue to provide additional consideration of new and renewal applications from well-supported investigators who currently receive $2 million or more in total costs, per year of active NIH funding (e.g. grants and cooperative agreements) . All other elements of the policy remain unchanged from NOT-OD-12-140, including the types of support that contribute to the threshold, applications excluded from this requirement, and provisions for IC-specific variations.


Please direct all inquiries to:

NIH Office of Policy for Extramural Research Administration
Division of Grants Policy