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Applicant Appeal Policy and Procedures

The only basis on which an appeal regarding a decision concerning the funding of a grant application will be considered is in the case of an alleged error in, or violation of, the peer review process and procedures. For example, the principal investigator may believe that he or she has a conflict of interest with a member of the review panel that was not known to the program at the time of the review. Appeals based on substantive disagreement with the peer review evaluation will not be considered. In such cases, applicants may resubmit applications in a subsequent grant cycle.

Before submitting appeals, applicants are encouraged to talk about their concerns informally with the appropriate program officer and program director.

Appeals must be submitted in writing to the vice president of Research and Graduate Studies, University of California, Office of the President, within thirty (30) days of receiving the Summary Statement. The vice president may, if an applicant shows good cause, grant a reasonable extension of time for the submission of the request for review. The appeal must contain a complete statement of the basis for the appeal, including pertinent facts, supporting arguments, and documentation. If the application was submitted through an institution, the appeal must be submitted officially through that institution, and it must be signed by the official authorized to sign for the institution, as well as by the principal investigator. No appeal shall affect any authority of the University of California, Office of the President, the vice president of Research and Graduate Studies, the executive director of the Research Grants Program Office, or the applicable program director.

Upon receipt of an appeal, the vice president of Research and Graduate Studies shall make a decision as to whether the dispute is reviewable under this appeals policy and notify the applicant, the program director and the executive director of the Research Grants Program Office of the determination. If the appeal is reviewable, it shall be transmitted to an appeal review committee appointed by the vice president. This committee will be comprised of two persons who are knowledgeable about both the type of research in question and the review procedures. The appeal review committee shall provide the applicant an opportunity to submit additional statements and documentation relevant to the appeal review committee's deliberation of the issues. The appeal will consider the application as submitted. Therefore, such supplemental appeals materials may not include additional data or clarification of the original application. The appeal review committee may, at its discretion, invite the applicant and any other person(s) to discuss the pertinent issues with the committee and submit such additional information as the committee deems appropriate. The committee may also request information from the program director regarding the review procedures or other issues raised in the appeal.

Participants in an appeal review (i.e., committee members and outside experts) and any materials considered will be subject to the same rules of confidentiality that govern the initial handling and evaluation of the application.

Based upon its review, the committee will prepare a written decision to be signed by the members. The appeal review committee shall send the written decision as advice to the vice president, who will render a final written decision and transmit it to the applicant, the members of the appeal review committee, the program director and the RGPO executive director. No further appeals within the University of California are available.