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    NIH Study: Research Topic Contributes to Persistent Gap in NIH Research Grants to Black Scientists

    Date: October 17, 2019

    A new study by NIH scientists found that research topic preference accounts for more than 20% of a persistent funding gap for black scientists applying for NIH research project grants compared to white scientists. A new finding from the study suggests black applicants as a group are more likely to propose research topics that are less likely to be funded. Researchers examined each step in the application submission and review process for R01 applications submitted between 2011-2015.The study confirms previous findings that career stage and institutional resources influence the gap in the number of submissions by black and white researchers. "These results were a surprise  -- research topics that were less funded are vitally important," NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D. was quoted in a NIH press release. "We need to understand whether there is an intrinsic bias against such topics by reviewers, or whether the methodologies used in those fields of research need an upgrade." The journal Science Advances published the study last week. Please click here to read more about the NIH study.

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