[Federal Register: April 28, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 81)]
[Notices]               
[Page 22949-22951]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr28ap99-93]


[[Page 22949]]

_______________________________________________________________________

Part IV

Department of Education
_______________________________________________________________________

Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services; National
Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research; Inviting 
Nominations for Individuals To Serve as Peer Reviewers on Standing 
Panels; Notice


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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services; National 
Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research; Notice Inviting 
Nominations for Individuals to Serve as Peer Reviewers on Standing 
Panels

    Purpose: The purpose of this notice is to invite interested parties 
to nominate qualified individuals to serve three-year terms as peer 
reviewers on standing panels.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Jaeger, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Room 3422, Switzer Building, 
Washington, DC. 20202-2645. Telephone: (202) 205-8061. Individuals who 
use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the TDD 
number at (202) 205-9136. Internet: Robert__Jaeger@ed.gov
    Individuals with disabilities may obtain this document in an 
alternate format (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer 
diskette) on request to the contact person listed in the preceding 
paragraph.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 202(f)(1) of the Rehabilitation Act, 
as amended, requires the Director of NIDRR to provide for scientific 
review of all applications for financial assistance for research, 
training, and demonstration projects. The scientific peer review must 
be conducted by individuals who are scientists or other experts in the 
rehabilitation field (including the independent living field), 
including knowledgeable individuals with disabilities, and the 
individuals representatives, who are not Federal employees, and who are 
competent to review applications for the financial assistance.
    NIDRR's current peer review process uses ad hoc panels that are 
selected on a competition by competition basis. Many constituents have 
criticized the ad hoc panel system, and the Institute of Medicine, in 
its report Enabling America, recommended that NIDRR establish a 
standing panel review process in order to enhance its peer review 
process. One of the recommendations from the steering committee for 
NIDRR's long-range planning process was that NIDRR devise improvements 
to its research application review process. In 1997-1998, NIDRR formed 
a Standing Panel Working Group (SPWG) to evaluate NIDRR's existing peer 
review procedures and compare them to practices of other Federal 
agencies. Representatives from the National Institutes of Health, the 
National Science Foundation, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and 
the Department of Health and Human Services, all with direct experience 
with peer review systems served on the SPWG. The SPWG produced a report 
on current practices at other agencies, and a recommendation for NIDRR 
to establish standing panels aligned with the objectives in the 
proposed Long-Range Plan (LRP). The proposed LRP can be accessed on the 
World Wide Web at:

http://www.ed.gov/legislation/FedRegister/announcements/1998-4/
102698a.html

    NIDRR plans to use standing panels of peer reviewers to evaluate 
Field Initiated Project (FIP) applications and applications for Small 
Business Innovative Research (SBIR) projects. NIDRR receives 
approximately 200 FIP applications and 200 SBIR applications per year. 
NIDRR plans to use standing panels in order to enhance continuity, 
provide for more extensive feedback, and obtain the services of better 
qualified reviewers, including those with disabilities and those from 
diverse backgrounds.
    NIDRR plans for peer reviewers to serve for three-year terms on the 
standing panels, with two meetings to be held per year: one for FIP 
reviews and one for SBIR reviews. Because NIDRR plans to have staggered 
terms, there will be an ongoing need for candidates for appointment. 
The nomination process will remain open on a continuous basis, and 
nominations may be made at any time.
    The format for submitting nominations for the new standing panels 
is in the Appendix. Individuals should review the list of standing 
panels NIDRR intends to form, and nominate ONE individual to serve as a 
member of ONE of these standing panels. Individuals may not nominate 
more than one person or nominate the same person for more than one 
panel. The nominator should be well acquainted with the nominee and 
have insight as to the nominee's abilities as a peer reviewer. 
Individuals may be qualified to be peer reviewers on the basis of 
education and training or some combination of personal and professional 
experience with disability. Nominators must contact the individual they 
wish to nominate to determine if the prospective nominee is willing to 
serve, and to avoid multiple nominations. Nominators must obtain the 
nominee's resume or curriculum vitae for submission to NIDRR. 
Individuals may not nominate themselves.
    The standing panels NIDRR intends to form are based on the research 
agenda stated in the proposed LRP. They are as follows: (1) Employment 
Outcomes; (2) Health and Function; (3) Technology for Access and 
Function; (4) Independent Living and Community Integration; and (5) 
Statistics, Outcomes Research, Disability Studies, Rehabilitation 
Science, and Policy.

Electronic Access to This Document

    You may view this document, as well as all other Department of 
Education documents published in the Federal Register, in text or Adobe 
Portable Document Format (PDF) on the World Wide Web at either of the 
following sites:

http://ocfo.ed.gov/fedreg.html
http://www.ed.gov/news.html

To use the PDF you must have the Adobe Acrobat Reader Program with 
Search, which is available free at either of the preceding sites. If 
you have questions about using the PDF, call the U.S. Government 
Printing Office (GPO) at (202) 512-1530 or, toll free at 1-888-293-
6498.

    Note: The official version of this document is the document 
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the 
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal 
Regulations is available on GPO Access at:

http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/index.html

    Applicable Program Regulations: 34 CFR Part 350.

    Program Authority: 29 U.S.C. 760-764.

    Dated: April 22, 1999.
Judith E. Heumann,
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.

Appendix--Nomination Procedure

    Prospective panel members must be nominated by an individual who 
is well acquainted with the nominee and has insight as to the 
nominee's abilities as a peer reviewer. Nominators must contact the 
individual they wish to nominate to determine if the prospective 
nominee is willing to serve, and to avoid multiple nominations. If 
multiple nominations for a single individual are received, only the 
first nomination received by NIDRR will be processed. Individuals 
may not nominate themselves. The nominator should forward two items 
to NIDRR:

1. One Page Cover Letter

    This is prepared by the nominator, and should include:
    (1) The name of the nominee, mailing address, and other contact 
information for both nominator and nominee; (2) the name of the 
panel the individual is being nominated to; (3) a brief description 
of the qualifications of the nominee to serve as a member of that

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standing panel; and (4) a brief statement as to how the nominator is 
acquainted with the nominee.

2. Complete Resume or Curriculum Vitae of Nominee

    This may be in any format and length, but must include 
sufficient information to evaluate the nominee's credentials, 
including their education and experience.
    These documents should be sent by mail to: Robert J. Jaeger, 
Ph.D., Standing Panel Nominations, U.S. Department of Education, 400 
Maryland Avenue, SW., Room 3422, Switzer Building, Washington, DC. 
20202-2645.
    If the documents are sent by courier service, the following 
address should be used: Robert J. Jaeger, Ph.D., Standing Panel 
Nominations, U.S. Department of Education; 330 C St., SW.; Room 
3422, Switzer Building, Washington, DC. 20202-2645. Telephone 202-
205-8061.
    Nominations by fax, e-mail, or other electronic versions will 
not be accepted. Confirmation of receipt of nomination will be sent 
by regular mail to all nominators and nominees.

[FR Doc. 99-10607 Filed 4-27-99; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-U