The NIH is a medical research agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and is the largest public funder of biomedical research in the world. The NIH is comprised of 27 Institutes and Centres and through its extensive grant programs, the NIH provides support for research grants to career development awards, research training and fellowships, center grants, and more.
Note that UNSW has completed all the registrations required to apply through Grants.gov. All PIs named on an application will also need to be registered as a PI on the eRA Commons system to successfully submit an application to the NIH. Please contact your Grants Officer for further information.
You must submit a draft version of your application to the your Grants Officer for compliance checking and approval at least ten working days prior to the Sponsors external due date.
UNSW is defined under NIH policy as a foreign institution. Applications from foreign institutions are evaluated and scored using the standard assessment criteria but also have to address some additional criteria:
- How the project will use unique or unusual talent, resources, populations or environmental conditions that are not readily available in the US or that build on existing US resources
- Whether the proposed project has specific relevance to the mission and objectives of the Institute and has the potential to significantly advance health sciences in the US
The NIH Grants Policy Statement
The NIH Grants Policy Statement (October 2017) details obligations of Principal Investigators in submitting grant applications, section 18.104.22.168 details that:
'The applicant organization is required to secure and retain a unique signature and dated assurance from the PD/PI for each submitted application, prior to submitting an application to the NIH. This assurance must be available to the NIH or other authorized DHHS or Federal officials upon request. Such an assurance must include at least the following certifications:
- that the information submitted within the application is true, complete and accurate to the best of the PI’s knowledge;
- that any false, fictitious, or fraudulent statements or claims may subject the PI to criminal, civil, or administrative penalties; and
- that the PI agrees to accept responsibility for the scientific conduct of the project and to provide the required progress reports if a grant is awarded as a result of the application.
If multiple PIs are proposed in an application, this assurance must be retained for all named PIs.'
All applications from foreign institutions need to submit a detailed budget.
- Facilities and Administration (F&A) costs are the infrastructure support or indirect costs that UNSW deducts from grants. Researchers should request 8% of their budget in F&A costs for all US Federal Awards. The 8% will be deducted from your grant at setup.
- Facilities and Administration costs are not to be used to support the acquisition of, or provide for depreciation on, any capital expenditures, or support the normal, general operations of foreign and international organisations.
- The application budget and your justification should be stated in US dollars and the exchange rate used clearly stated in your justification.
- NIH will not compensate foreign grantees for changes in exchange rates.
Allowable (Direct) Costs
- The costs must be specifically and readily identifiable to a specific project with a high degree of accuracy.
- The costs are required by the project scope, due to the project’s special purpose or circumstances.
- The costs must be specifically budgeted as a line item in the proposal budget and justified in the proposal narrative.
- Fly America Act Applies (must fly American Airlines)
As an institution receiving or applying for NIH funding (either as the lead institution or a sub-recipient), the University (UNSW) is required to comply with the NIH Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) policy. As part of this policy, UNSW has a number of responsibilities that include informing all Investigators of both NIH and UNSW internal policies governing FCOI, ensuring all Investigators complete the NIH training model regarding the NIH FCOI Policy, and managing, reducing and reporting any Investigator’s Significant Financial Interests.
If you are intending to apply for NIH funding, you must review the Public Health Service/National Institute of Health Awards Financial Conflict of Interest (FCOI) Procedure and complete the required NIH FCOI training outlined in the procedure. Please also review the below policies.
Resources, information and support to assist you with International Funding
- UNSW Pricing Tool - Calculate UNSW indirect costs on externally funded research grants & contracts
- UNSW Budget Preparation Resource Page - Tool & Resources to assist in the preparation of a budget for grant applications
- Research Policies, Procedures & Forms
- Managing your Funding - Support, information and services to help manage your research funding
- Research Strategy Office (RSO) - The RSO is available for strategic advice on the scope, nature and suitability of any proposed projects, how to address the selection criteria including track record, and general grantsmanship
- Research Grants and Contrants (RGC) - RGC supports UNSW researchers in the development, preparation and submission of research grant applications and oversees negotiation and administration of research awards, contracts and consulting research