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Freedom of Information Act Office

IC Directors' Meeting Highlights

July 17, 2009

To: IC Directors
From: Penny Burgoon
Subject: IC Directors Meeting Highlights—June 11, 2009

Discussion Items

NIH Retreat on International Programs: Outcomes and Recommendations

Dr. Roger Glass—Director FIC and NIH Associate Director for International Research—summarized activities and recommendations from a May 21, 2009 International Programs Retreat.

At the retreat, ICs shared examples of innovative global health research, including partnerships with the World Health Organization, building global cohorts of skilled scientists, and joint funding arrangements with foreign partners. These examples demonstrated the positive efforts of the many NIH ICs in global health research and also identified common problems such as issues with IRB clearance, limited information technology capacity, and difficulty in coordinating memoranda of understanding. It was felt that sharing of experiences and best practices can further IC efforts individually and collectively. Recommendations from the retreat were to 1) establish an NIH International Research Working Group at a senior leadership level (Deputy or Associated Director) and 2) compile a comprehensive database of NIH international activities and resources.

Some possible activities for the Working Group may involve review of NIH policies and procedures related to international research to identify actions that might help ICs expand their international activities and development of guidance for international clinical research and training. The Office of Extramural Research worked with FIC to demonstrate the use of the NIH Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tool (RePORT) to pinpoint NIH investments globally in some developing countries.

IC Directors and other NIH senior staff commented that the retreat provided useful sharing of information and potential resources. Dr. Kington inquired as to how NIH may more readily be able to identify and collect the foreign components from domestic grants. Dr. Sally Rockey said that OER is considering a number of approaches to address this issue, including developing a fingerprint for portfolio analysis and self-identification in electronic applications. Alumni networks were also identified as a useful resource for leveraging existing networks in other countries, and it was also suggested that federal agencies may have other networks which also could be explored.

Dr. Glass will contact IC Directors to invite them or their senior staff to serve on the Working Group.

Other updates

ARRA: Drs. Kington and Tabak updated the IC Directors on the status of Challenge Grants review. The GO Grants and P30 Faculty Recruitment applications for bioethics (an OD-funded portion of the P30 program) will undergo 2nd level central review in August. Dr. Scarpa noted that the first stage of review for the Challenge Grants is nearly complete and asked ICs to provide an estimate of the number of applications that they would like discussed.

Penny Wung Burgoon

This page last reviewed on May 29, 2012

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