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Richer, deeper, stronger: New analytical approaches for enhanced analyses of the NIH behavioral and social sciences research portfolio

Wednesday, October 10, 2012 — Poster Session II

Noon – 2:00 p.m

Natcher Conference Center, Building 45




  • WN Elwood
  • CA Johnson
  • SH Jonas
  • RM Kaplan
  • KM Kulinowski
  • WW Lau
  • EL Stover


To enhance the understanding of NIH’s portfolio in behavioral and social sciences research (BSSR), we engaged program directors (PDs) to categorize NIH BSSR at a level of granularity that is finer than is available through RCDC. The charge of RCDC is to report research funding transparently and comprehensively, not to report on every emerging scientific direction or trans-NIH initiative. There are currently two relevant broad and trans-NIH categories, namely behavioral and social sciences research (BSSR) and basic behavioral and social sciences research (b-BSSR). The focus of the current pilot investigation is on five BSSR-centric categories, namely decision sciences, social epidemiology, measurement development, and mobile health (mHealth). We have developed classifiers that were trained on the entire NIH extramural portfolio including grants selected by eleven Institutes as representative to each proposed category. The results of these classifiers were then sampled and validated by the participating PDs. We also accessed available personal PI information to determine whether and how NIH’s overall BSSR portfolio contributes to ameliorating recent, publicly-reported extramural research funding disparities. Both qualitative and quantitative results will be reported that reflect the most significant trends—as well as how results will be used for strategic planning across the agency.

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