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FAQ For BD2K Standards R24 FOA

Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) Community-Based Data and Metadata Standards Efforts (R24)

  1. Are there any changes to RFA-ES-16-010?
    Yes, the application due date has changed to November 9, 2016, and there was also a correction to the eligibility of foreign components. Please see the released notice of change (NOT-ES-16-013).
  2. What is meant by “data and metadata standards must be of broad relevance to NIH?”
    The BD2K Program is focusing on data standards efforts that would be of interest to multiple NIH Institutes and Centers. Such standards should enable broad data-sharing and reuse of data generated across the full spectrum of NIH-relevant research, from single investigators conducting R01-driven research to large collaborative networks and consortia. For example, DICOM is an example of a widely used medical imaging standard (also an ISO standard) relevant to clinical research across NIH. Similarly, the Gene Ontology (GO), though not an ISO standard, is used by many researchers across multiple NIH Institutes and Centers. A set of measures, or standard questions and answers (metadata) about Cognition, Alcohol Use or Measuring Blood Pressure are other examples of potentially broad relevance across multiple NIH Institutes. However, a standard that is only applicable or of interest to a few labs or very narrow domain of research might not be of broad relevance to NIH.
  3. How or why would a de novo standard be considered acceptable?
    A de novo standard would be acceptable if it fills an important gap that has broad relevance to NIH and no equivalent, voluntary consensus standard exists.
  4. Can you provide examples of leveraging off existing standards to enable broad data sharing and reuse of data?
    The following are just a few examples of leveraging existing standards to extend or create new standards to provide additional value towards data sharing, reuse or integrating data.
    1. Extension of an existing standard to make it useful for additional purposes or by additional groups (e.g., adding a new hierarchy / domain to an ontology for a specific purpose or community).
    2. Modifying one or more standards to facilitate creating a group of standards that can be used synergistically.
    3. Creating standards mappings or mapping tools that will facilitate sharing/integrating data annotated with different (and/or overlapping) existing standards.
  5. Is there a preferred place to submit information about a standard so that people can find and reuse it?
    All standards developed, extended or otherwise enhanced through BD2K grants are to be registered with a curated, searchable portal (e.g., BioPortal or BioSharing, or similar standards resource).
  6. What tool development would be appropriate for this FOA?
    Appropriate tools will implement and/or facilitate use of existing standard(s) – for example, adaptation or use of BD2K-supported CEDAR (Center for Data Annotation and Retrieval) tools to facilitate creating or harmonizing metadata standards in a new research domain, or an API that facilitates consistent and easy use of a standard.  Any standards-related software tool should be made freely available and transferable, i.e., ability of another individual or team to continue development as appropriate and, for example, be able to modify source code.
  7. How will the FOA be re-issued?
    The R24 FOA release will comprise of two receipt dates.  This will provide information about the size and characteristics of the applicant pool and identify needed adjustments (e.g., review criteria, allowable budgets, proposal requirements) for possible re-release of a targeted RFA in the future.
  8. What is the likely number/duration of potential awards?
    We expect to fund 4-5 grants in FY 17 and another 4-5 in FY 18. Grants will be funded for up to 3 years.
  9. May I resubmit an application?
    Yes, an applicant may resubmit to the second receipt date of the FOA, but there is no unsolicited option.
  10. How do we attain a DUNS registration?
    All registrations must be completed prior to the application being submitted. Registration can take 6 weeks or more, so applicants should begin the registration process as soon as possible. The NIH Policy on Late Submission of Grant Applications states that failure to complete registrations in advance of a due date is not a valid reason for a late submission of an application.

    Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) - All registrations require that applicants be issued a DUNS number. After obtaining a DUNS number, applicants can begin both SAM and eRA Commons registrations. The same DUNS number must be used for all registrations, as well as on the grant application.
  11. Which organizations are not eligible to apply to this FOA?
    For profit organizations are not eligible. If you have questions about eligibility and your application, please contact the scientific/research contact listed on the FOA.