Mike the Mad Biologist is a bit taken aback as he points to a statistical analysis in PLoS One that shows the NIH peer review process is not exactly steeped in the principles of statistical sampling. The paper says that the current number of recommended reviewers for each grant doesn't provide the level of precision that the NIH mandates for scoring the application. The study authors write, "It is commonly accepted that NIH will not fund clinical trials that do not include a cogent sample size determination. It is ironic that NIH insists on this analysis for clinical studies but has not recognized its value in evaluating its own system of peer review."
Irony at the NIH
Jul 29, 2008