Impact

What is the likelihood for the project to exert a sustained, powerful influence on the research field(s) involved? How would the program influence current marketed products? How would the successful product impact the market overall?

Investigators

Are the PD/PIs, collaborators, and other researchers well suited to the project? If Early Stage Investigators or New Investigators, or in the early stages of independent careers, do they have appropriate experience and training? If established, have they demonstrated an ongoing record of accomplishments that have advanced their field(s)? If the project is collaborative or multi-PD/PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise; are their leadership approach, governance and organizational structure appropriate for the project? What specific roles will each PI and collaborator play? How much time is allocated for each key person to accomplish their tasks? 

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Significance

How significant is your research program to the scientific community and general population? Strengths in Significance can be addressing an unmet medical need, changing the paradigm of research / thought process in a given area, applying a unique approach to a problem, or increasing efficiency / accuracy of a given program. The goal of the grant writer is to ensure clear dissemination of their program to the reader and to convince the reader that the program and approach of interest is of significance to the scientific community and general population.

Innovation

How innovative is your proposed product or research? Is your approach to a problem innovative? Innovation can be conducting a unique approach to a common problem. Innovation can be the approach to a specific problem or outcome of the research that produces a unique product.  Innovation of a program could also be high if the research delivers a more thorough understanding of the concept or provides a break-through in a given area/field.

Approach

Are the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the specific aims of the project? Are potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success presented? If the project is in the early stages of development, will the strategy establish feasibility and will particularly risky aspects be managed?  Do you have a research plan supported by flow charts?