See the Glossary for more terms.
Some links will work for NIAID staff only.
This standard operating procedure (SOP) includes the following sections: Purpose, Procedure, Contacts, and Links.
To let NIAID evaluate an organization it has funded or is considering funding under a grant or cooperative agreement.
This SOP covers the site visit process for grantees. For contracts, see the Site Visits, Contractor SOP.
NIAID usually conducts site visits after peer review, though there are exceptions. Sometimes we need to conduct a site visit after review but before awarding a grant. Other times we will conduct a site visit after award.
In a site visit, NIAID staff travel to grantee sites for one of the following reasons:
Before visiting an institution, NIAID explains the reason for the visit, confirms a visitation date, and provides a list of staff who will attend.
During the site visit, NIAID meets key staff and examines an institution's facilities, data, protocols, and accounting records.
Sometimes grants management specialists determine there is a need for a site visit without a program officer's input, generally in cases where NIAID has evidence of administrative or accounting deficiencies at an institution.
In a reverse site visit, grantees come to NIAID to address concerns about project management or scientific conduct. Applicants give a presentation in support of their project, followed by questions, feedback, and discussion.
NIAID may request a reverse site visit to consult with applicants before they apply for large, complex grants. A successful reverse site visit is not a guarantee of funding—the application still needs to go through the normal review process.
NIAID staff can request site visits and reverse site visits when they identify problems so they can resolve issues of confusion and provide constructive feedback.
After a site visit or reverse site visit, NIAID sends the institution a report that summarizes the visit, describes the issues resolved, and lists any actions the institution must take moving forward.
Foreign institutions follow the same procedure as domestic institutions.
Grantees with questions should contact their grants management specialist. For more information, see the GMP Management list.
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NIH’s Policy Topic: Site Visit Resources
Last Updated June 11, 2014
Last Reviewed July 11, 2013