thomas.delohery at VERIZON.NET
Thu Jun 24 23:49:34 EST 2004
It sounds like the NIH is adopting requirements established long ago by
the NCI for funding core facilities in
Core grant funding to Comprehensive Cancer Centers is intended for
support of peer-reviewed grants. Too much money was (is) being spent on
expensive instrumentation that was rarely used to capacity and can sit
idle for extended periods of time. Reasons for low utilization are
varied but staffing with competent personnel is certainly a major
factor. Establishing core facilities can provide investigators access to
technology without the added cost of purchasing expensive equipment and
staffing with expert personnel. Access to core facilities is frequently
criteria for awarding grants.
At least thats how its supposed to work, but like anything else,
people take unfair advantage of a good idea. Some individuals apply for
status to support their own research. The folks at NCI
consider it double dipping if the vast majority of the work done by a
facility is for one or two investigators or a single department.
One of the main pieces of information requested by members of any NCI
site-visit team I have been involved with was the amount of work done in
support of peer-reviewed grants and the proportion of work done for
individual investigators. My experience indicates the prevalence of
double dipping is widespread and unabashed. I assume this is due to the
inability of the NCI to thoroughly investigate the numbers being
presented for grant renewal.
Unless the NIH is considering different criteria, the primary function
of core facilities is to support peer-reviewed grants across a large
segment of the research community. That is not to say a core facility
cannot be involved with work that is not peer-reviewed, but the majority
of the work should be. I assume they will also have something in place
to check for double dipping.
It is good to hear the NIH is considering funding core facilities. They
can be an efficient use of scarce research funding. Being employed in a
Comprehensive Cancer Center brought me grief from several friends given
the preferential funding enjoyed by these institutions. Perhaps this
will level the playing field a bit.
my 2-cents, writing from home....
ckuszyns at unmc.edu wrote:
>At the recent ISAC meeting there was some discussion regarding NIH
>requirements to form "Super Cores" to support NIH based research on
>individual campuses. Which in effect means that campus cores or shared
>resources would need to be administered as a whole with all disciplines
>under the same management.
>Anyone have any more info or experience with this???
>Charles A. Kuszynski, Ph.D.
>Cell Analysis Facility
>University of Nebraska Medical Center
>985816 Nebraska Medical Center
>Omaha, NE 68198-5816
>402 559-6299 office
>402 559-6267 lab
>402 559-4077 fax
>ckuszyns at unmc.edu
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