Full Proposal Review, Ranking Criteria, and Selection Process
Invited research proposals will be reviewed by at least three peer reviewers, including two outside of Maine. Information transfer projects may necessitate reviews by experts in Maine, depending on the scope and nature of the project.
The proposal submission procedure for this program is a three step process:
Step I: PI must submit a list of 6 suggested reviewers, with at least four located outside of Maine no later than Friday, August 17, 2012 to email@example.com.
Step II: Prior to submission to the Mitchell Center, full proposals must be processed through your institution's standard procedure for proposals to be submitted to Federal agencies. Signature paperwork plus a hard copy of the proposal must be received by August 31, 2012:
Senator George J. Mitchell Center
5710 Norman Smith Hall
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469-5710.
Researchers at the Orono campus can expedite the institutional review notification by adding Ruth Hallsworth as the final approver in PARS. All other proposal review procedures at the Orono campus must be completed.
Step III: The complete electronic copy of the proposal must be submitted by the PI to http://niwr.net no later than 4 PM on the due date. Proposal text, investigator information and budget information are entered directly on the NIWR.net web page.
Once the peer-review process has been completed, final project selection will be based on the rankings of the Mitchell Center’s Research Advisory Committee comprised of agency, academic, non-profit, and private specialists in water resources and environmental sciences in Maine. PIs should pay careful attention to the proposal evaluation criteria used by peer-reviewers and the selection panel:
- Relevance to key environmental research needs and priorities in Maine as established by the selection panel and published in the call for proposals (10%),
- Scientific merit as judged by peer reviews (40%),
- Impact – the potential of the project to be important, innovative, or lead to future funding (20%),
- Total budget request and cost-effectiveness of the project, including leveraging of external dollars (15%),
- Student involvement (required) (10%),
- Attainable and significant proposed deliverables, including the likelihood of additional follow-on funding or other tangible result (5%).
The congressional authorizing language in the Water Resources Research Act specifically refers to the 'training of future water resource professionals'. Therefore, preference is given to projects for which student participation and training is a substantial part of the effort. Base-funded faculty PIs should prioritize student support, not their own salary, in order to increase the competitiveness of proposals. Rarely are projects funded that request more than one week per year in faculty salary.
Full Proposal Format
Full proposal content must contain the following items and be in the following order as required by federal program guidelines. The complete document should be set in 12 point type with one inch margins on all sides.
A list of 6 suggested reviewers, with at least four outside of Maine, must be submitted no later than Friday, August 3, 2012 to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following information is entered on-line at http://NIWR.net. New investigators must register under Maine at NIWR.net to obtain access to the site. Enter ERAS subsystem for (104B) System proposal
- Focus categories (see Attachment A)
- Keywords (see Attachment B)
- Project duration is 1 year , project start date may be as early as March 1, 2012
- Agency funding requested
- Matching funds provided
- PI names and affiliations (with full contact information for the lead PI)
- Congressional district (first or second Maine)
- Budget (use format provided in the invitation for full proposal development)
- Budget justification (one page maximum)
The information above is entered on-line at NIWR.net. Text can be transferred using cut-and-paste.
Main body of proposal (numbered starting with page 1)
13. Statement of critical regional or state water problem
14. Statement of results and benefits
15. Nature, scope, and objectives
16. Methods, procedures, and facilities available
17. Summary of closely related research (related activities for IT proposals)
18. Student training
19. Statement of government involvement
20. Expected deliverables, including information dissemination plan for all proposals (bulleted)
21. References cited
Sections 13 through 21 must fit on 8 pages.
22. Narrative statement of investigators qualifications
23. CVs/Resumes (maximum two pages per investigator)
24. Letters of participation from stakeholders.