DEB Spring 2015 Panel Update

At this point everyone should have heard back on your DEB Preliminary Proposals from the spring panels. If you have not:


1) Log in to your FastLane account. The information should be accessible there, but also make sure your contact email is correct because a typo there would prevent you from receiving updates and notifications.

2) If you were a CoPI, check with the lead PI on the preliminary proposal. The lead PI should have the results of review.

3) Did it wind up in your spam folder?

4) If you have exhausted all of the above options and have had no other contact with your DEB Program Officer, then it’s probably a good time to send us an email.


Preliminary Proposal Panel Results

DEB panels reviewed 1495 preliminary proposals; in consideration of the reviews and panel discussion, DEB Program Officers extended 383 invitations to submit full proposals for the August 2015 deadline. The Division-wide invitation rate for the preliminary proposals was 26%. Below, we detail the results of preliminary proposal review by programmatic cluster.

Cluster Invited Not Invited Total Invite Rate
Systematics and Biodiversity Science 87 221 308 28%
Evolutionary Processes 105 331 436 24%
Population and Community Ecology 107 320 427 25%
Ecosystem Science 84 240 324 26%
Grand Total 383 1112 1495 26%


This is the fourth round of preliminary proposal review for DEB core programs, which was started in 2012. DEB extended more invitations and achieved a higher invitation rate in comparison to prior years.

2012 2013 2014 2015
Reviewed 1626 1629 1590 1495
Invited 358 365 366 383
Invite Rate 22% 22% 23% 26%


As we discussed in our recent post on per-person success rate, the launch of the preliminary proposal system drew in a large number of “new” applicants. We believe we are now seeing this wave of applicants pass and this is reflected in the decrease in number of preliminary proposals reviewed in DEB as our communities realize that preliminary proposals do not make grants easier to get.

At the same time, the number of invitations has gone up. The increase is primarily a result of program management decisions as we have been able to refine our expectations for the number of proposals that will come to the full proposal panel through other mechanisms (CAREER, OPUS, RCN, and co-review).

2 thoughts on “DEB Spring 2015 Panel Update

  1. Pingback: Are small grants doing well in review? | DEBrief

  2. Pingback: DEB Numbers: Success Rates by Merit Review Recommendation – DEBrief

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