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Boards of Scientific Counselors (BSC)

The first Boards of Scientific Counselors (BSCs), constituted of scientists from outside NIH, were established in 1956 to review intramural research at NIH. The BSCs were established to advise the Scientific Directors (SDs) on the quality of the intramural research programs for which they are responsible. To assure that the BSC’s evaluations are most useful to the SDs in their decision-making, the BSCs must be composed of individuals who have outstanding scientific credentials and who are committed to providing rigorous, objective reviews. Although the principal purpose of these independent evaluations is to advise the SDs, the reports of the BSCs will be distributed to the Director, National Institutes of Health, the Deputy Director for Intramural Research, and the appropriate Institute or Center (IC) Director. The BSC also reports annually to the National Advisory Council or Board of the IC. For additional information, please review:

Criteria for Scientific Review of Intramural Research

  • Significance: Have the investigator's studies addressed important problems? Are the aims of the project(s) being achieved? Is scientific knowledge being advanced and are the projects affecting the concepts or methods that drive this field?
  • Approach: In general are the approaches well conceived? Where problem areas arose were reasonable alternative tactics employed?
  • Innovation: Do the projects employ novel concepts, approaches, or methods? Are the aims original and innovative? Do the projects challenge existing paradigms or develop new methodologies or technologies?
  • Environment: Is the investigator taking advantage of the special features of the NIH intramural scientific environment or employing useful collaborative arrangements?
  • Support: Is the support the investigator received appropriate?
  • Investigator Training: Is the investigator appropriately trained and well suited to carry out the projects being pursued? Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level of the principal investigator and other researchers (if any)?
  • Productivity: Considering the investigator's other responsibilities (e.g., service, or administrative), how would you rate his/her overall research productivity?
  • Mentoring: Is the investigator providing appropriate training and mentoring for more junior investigators?

The page was last updated on Friday, October 15, 2021 - 1:27pm