As scientific fields evolve, CSR works to align its study sections to adequately review applications in their respective fields. CSR follows a comprehensive process to seek input from and build consensus with working groups of representatives from the relevant academic and scientific communities and our advisory committee. Recommendations from these working groups may result in the creation of a new study section or the modification or elimination of existing study sections.
Our alignment activities are guided by principles that were established by an external blue ribbon panel set up to systematically assess and reorganize CSR’s review groups:
- Applications that pertain to a given disease/organ system are best reviewed in the context of the biological question being addressed.
- Study section boundaries should not be too broad or too narrow.
- Sufficient overlap should exist between other study sections inside and outside their integrated review groups (or IRGs).
- Clinical applications should be clustered when possible.
The review of IRGs is a continuous process. The biannual review of CSR’s 25 IRGs has occurred since 2006, and the second round began in spring 2009. Typically two IRGs are reviewed every other month to cross-fertilize ideas in their disciplines. We anticipate that this new round of review will be completed by early 2011.
For each IRG review, CSR enlists leaders in the relevant area of science to provide critical input on where the relevant fields of science are going and whether CSR’s study sections could be organized in a different way to benefit review. While some of these experts are current study section members, others are experts from the external scientific community who are not reviewers. These working group members provide their recommendations via pre-IRG review teleconferences and white paper evaluations. Members occasionally are invited to IRG review meetings, which may be face-to-face or electronic. meetings.
2011 Review Group Realignments and Reorganizations
2010 Review Group Realignments and Reorganizations
CSR has adjusted and created new study sections in a number of its Integrated Review Groups (IRGs):
The new and revised guidelines for all these changes have been posted on CSR’s Review Group Description Web pages.
Key Historical Documents