Application Review Process
Table of Contents
External Peer Review
All eligible grant applications are reviewed by an appropriate external technical peer review panel comprised of individual experts using the criteria below. This review is designed to evaluate each application according to its scientific merit. Each peer review panel includes non-EPA scientists, engineers, social scientists, and/or economists who are accomplished in their respective disciplines and proficient in the technical subjects they are reviewing. Reviewers are asked to individually assign a score of either highly recommend, recommend, or not recommend to each application. EPA translates the average of these individual scores into the final panel review score.The following are the criteria for the Phase I awards.
Criteria for Phase I AwardsAll grant applications for Phase I awards will be peer reviewed by an external peer review panel to evaluate each proposal according to its scientific merit. The following criteria will be used in descending order of importance. Note: This order is not the same as the required order for proposal submission.
Relationship of Challenge to Sustainability (People, Prosperity and the Planet)Does the proposed project promote sustainable environmental protection, economic prosperity, and social benefit across scales in the developing and/or developed world?
People: Do the proposed environmental and economic outcomes benefit society? Does the project meet the needs of the intended end user? If the design is intended for the developing world, does it have the potential to improve quality of life? If it is intended for the developed world, does it use energy and material resources effectively and efficiently through the life cycle while reducing hazards to human health and the environment?Prosperity: Does the proposal mention or consider short- and long-term costs?
Planet: In general, will the design reduce impacts on the environment and human health, diminish resource consumption, and/or directly benefit the environment? Does the proposal demonstrate: (1) That the design demonstration will not exhaust or degrade the local environment or shift the environmental impacts to another locality? (2) That the proposed project is less damaging or more beneficial to the health of natural systems than the traditional design?
- Is the technical challenge defined in terms that are relevant, significant, and related to sustainability?
- Is the scope of the project clearly described? Are potential or realized project characteristics, opportunities, and limitations described?
Innovation and Technical Merit
Is the design novel? Is the design interdisciplinary? Does the proposal address feasibility of the design, demonstrate scientific/technical soundness, and discuss trade-offs in the design approach? Is the proposed approach and are the suggested materials adequate and appropriate?
Measurable Results (outputs/outcomes), Evaluation Method, and Demonstration Strategy
Can the goals and objectives be determined and achieved? Do the methods to quantify the benefits seem applicable, effective, and appropriate? Have the necessary partnerships been developed or will they be pursued? Can the design or approach be replicated in other situations?
Integration of P3 Concepts as an Educational Tool
Will the proposed plans maximize the educational benefits of the P3 Award program to the participants, institution, and surrounding community?
Internal Programmatic Review
Applications receiving scores of highly recommend or recommend as a result of the peer review process will then undergo an internal programmatic review, as described below, conducted by technical experts from the EPA, including individuals from the Office of Research and Development (ORD) and program and regional offices involved with the science or engineering proposed. All other applications are automatically declined.
After the peer review, those applicants who received scores of highly recommend or recommend as a result of the peer review process will be asked to provide additional information for the programmatic review pertaining to the proposed Lead Principal Investigator's (PI) "Past Performance and Reporting History." The applicant must provide the EPA Project Officer with information on the proposed Lead PI's past performance and reporting history under prior Federal agency assistance agreements (assistance agreements include grants and cooperative agreements but not contracts) in terms of: (i) the level of success in performing each agreement, and (ii) how progress towards achieving the results intended under each agreement was reported. This information is required only for the proposed Lead PI's performance under Federal assistance agreements (assistance agreements include grants and cooperative agreements but not contracts) initiated within the last three years that were similar in size and scope to the proposed project.
The specific information required for each agreement is shown below, and must be provided within two weeks of EPA's request. A maximum of three pages will be permitted for the response; excess pages will not be reviewed. Note: If no prior past performance information and/or reporting history exists, you will be asked to so state.
- Name of Granting Agency
- Grant/Cooperative agreement number
- Grant/Cooperative agreement title
- Brief description of the grant/cooperative agreement
- A description of how the agreement is similar in size and scope to the proposed project and whether or not it was successfully performed; if not successfully performed, provide an explanation.
- Information relating to the proposed Lead PI's past performance in reporting on progress towards achieving the expected results (outputs/outcomes) under the agreement. Include the history of submitting timely progress/final technical reports, describe how progress towards achieving the expected results was reported/documented, and if such progress was not being made, provide an explanation of whether, and how, this was reported.
- Total (all years) grant/cooperative agreement dollar value
- Project period
- Technical contact (project officer), telephone number, and E-mail address (if available)
The purpose of the programmatic review is to assure an integrated research portfolio for the Agency and help determine which applications to recommend for award. In conducting the programmatic review, the EPA will consider information provided by the applicant and may consider information from other sources, including prior and current grantors and agency files.
The internal programmatic review panel will assess:
- The relevance of the proposed science to EPA research priorities and EPA's statutory authority.
- The proposed Lead PI's past performance [under Federal agency assistance agreements (assistance agreements include grants and cooperative agreements but not contracts) initiated within the last three years that were similar in size and scope to the proposed project] in two areas: First, in successfully performing these prior Federal assistance projects, including whether there is a satisfactory explanation for any lack of success. Second, in reporting progress towards achieving results under these agreements, including the proposed Lead PI's history of submitting timely progress/final technical reports that adequately describe the progress toward achieving the expected results (outputs/outcomes) under the agreements. Any explanation of why progress towards achieving the results was not made will also be considered. Applicants whose proposed Lead PI has no relevant past performance and/or reporting history, or for whom this information is not available, will be evaluated neither favorably nor unfavorably on these elements
Above Information From P3 Website http://es.epa.gov/ncer/rfa/2008/2008_p3.html
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