APPENDIX D
Responses to "Dear Colleague" Letter

The committee mailed a "Dear Colleague" letter to all principal investigators of 1993/1994 and 1995 grant and contract awards (approximately 700 individuals) asking for feedback on all aspects of the grant process (see Appendix C). We received responses from 94 individuals as well as one from a person who was aware of the survey but had been denied grant funding. The characteristics of the respondents are outlined below.

Characteristics of Respondents

No. of Respondents

Total respondents (all grant recipients)

94

BCRP study section members

19

BCRP study section chairs

3

Denied funding for at least one application

11

Overwhelmingly positive

48

Positive with suggestions for improvement

39

Mostly negative, major criticisms

7



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OCR for page 119
A Review of the Department of Defense's Program for Breast Cancer Research APPENDIX D Responses to "Dear Colleague" Letter The committee mailed a "Dear Colleague" letter to all principal investigators of 1993/1994 and 1995 grant and contract awards (approximately 700 individuals) asking for feedback on all aspects of the grant process (see Appendix C). We received responses from 94 individuals as well as one from a person who was aware of the survey but had been denied grant funding. The characteristics of the respondents are outlined below. Characteristics of Respondents No. of Respondents Total respondents (all grant recipients) 94 BCRP study section members 19 BCRP study section chairs 3 Denied funding for at least one application 11 Overwhelmingly positive 48 Positive with suggestions for improvement 39 Mostly negative, major criticisms 7

OCR for page 119
A Review of the Department of Defense's Program for Breast Cancer Research Criticism No. of Letters Application Process   Cumbersome application process (e.g., length of forms, details required of safety plans, laboratory environment) 46 Communication with DOD staff inadequate regarding grant submission 8 No mechanisms to resubmit or improve grants not funded 3 Training grant applications should request and evaluate training environment, mentors, other key factors in training program 3 Time from submission to notification about funding too long 3 Grants Management   Annual report requirements too long, not well reviewed, oversight too rigid 13 Human volunteers regulations too burdensome 8 No flexibility in spending across budget categories 3 Peer/programmatic review   Concerns about funding out of priority score order 10 Lack of continuity in study section members 3