request for information

Dept. of Ed Seeks Input on Mental and Behavioral Health of Students in Higher Education

The Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE) within the Department of Education (DOE) has issued a request for information (RFI) regarding support systems for the mental and behavioral health of students in higher education. Recognizing the rising rates of depression and anxiety over the past two decades, OPE seeks successful examples of addressing student mental health and substance use disorder needs, transforming campus cultures at institutions of higher education (IHEs), and receiving support from State higher education agencies. Further, OPE seeks to understand challenges that IHEs face in implementing solutions. Comments are requested by February 25 and can be submitted here. This article was…

EPA Seeks Public Comment on Draft Scientific Integrity Policy

On January 24, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a 30-day public comment period on the draft updates to its Scientific Integrity (SI) Policy. This policy is in response to the White Houseā€™s Office of Science and Technology Policyā€™s (OSTP) memorandum requiring federal agencies to develop scientific integrity policies to restore trust in science (see previous COSSA coverage). The updated SI Policy will adopt a new Federal definition of scientific integrity and meaningfully strengthen several policy elements that will help ensure a culture of scientific integrity at the Agency. It will incorporate the model scientific integrity policy from the National Science and Technology Council’s A…

NIH Requests Comments on Strategic Plan for Data Science

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has issued a request for information (RFI) on their draft Strategic Plan for Data Science. As previously reported by COSSA, the NIH Strategic Plan for Data Science was initially released in 2018. The plan is intended to address advances in data collection, including the increase in quantity and diversity within data, and support data science as a tool for understanding health sciences. In the draft, NIH outlines five goals, including aims to improve NIH policy for data collection, maximize data for research, expand opportunities in data collection services, including artificial intelligence (AI), support a federal biomedical research data…

NIH Releases RFI on Draft Scientific Integrity PolicyĀ 

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released a request for information (RFI) on the draft of their new Scientific Integrity Policy. This policy is in response to the White Houseā€™s Office of Science and Technology Policyā€™s (OSTP) memorandum requiring federal agencies to develop scientific integrity policies to restore trust in science (see previous COSSA coverage). NIH expects the policy to ensure that research is trustworthy and available to the public, and that their policies and programs are transparent, and evidence based. The draft policy changes include a new definition of scientific integrity; roles and responsibilities of the new positions NIH Chief Scientist and NIH…

HHS Requests Comments on Revision of Research Misconduct PoliciesĀ 

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a request for information (RFI) on a proposed revision of the Public Health Service (PHS) Policies on Research Misconduct within the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH). This policy has not been updated since its creation in 2005 and HHS expects to update the policy to clarify confidentiality requirements and revise definitions of various terms that were not previously defined in the original policy. Comments are requested by December 5 and can be submittedĀ here.Ā Ā 

IES Requests Comments on Topics for New Program ā€œFrom Seedlings to Scaleā€

The National Center for Education Research (NCER), a center within the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), released a request for information (RFI) seeking potential topics for the agency’s new program ā€œFrom Seedlings to Scaleā€ (S2S) within the recently developed Accelerate, Transform, and Scale (ATS) initiative. ATS is intended to produce high-risk, high-reward education research in response to FY 2023 appropriation language. S2S is intended to support research, product development, and sustainability and scaling in the education marketplace. The RFIā€™s list of questions can be found here. Comments are due November 13 and should be submitted here. 

Senator Bill Cassidy Requests Comments on Reforming the NIH

On September 29, Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) released aĀ request for informationĀ (RFI)Ā seekingĀ ways to reform the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Senator Cassidy is the ranking member of theĀ Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee. According to Cassidy, the RFI is intended to gain insight on ways to increase the pace of science and better organize the NIH, including ways to improve the federal research grant application process and improve collaboration and transparency within both academia and federal agencies. A detailed list of the questions asked can be foundĀ here. Comments are due October 27 and should be sent to NIHModernization@help.senate.gov. 

OMB Issues Trust Regulation RFI within the Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency Act

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released aĀ request for informationĀ for the codification of the four fundamental responsibilities of the Codification of Statistical Policy Directive No. 1 (Trust Regulation) within theĀ Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency ActĀ (CIPSEA). The responsibilities are the production of relevant and timely data, ensuring that data is credible and accurate, remaining objective, and protecting confidentiality. In a recent webinar on the Trust Regulation hosted by theĀ American Statistical Association, a COSSA Governing Member, U.S. Chief Statistician, Karin A. Orvis, highlighted the importance of codifying the responsibilities to improve transparency in the agency and improve public…

NIH Releases RFI For Biomedical and Behavioral Science Research

The Common Fund of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has issued a request for information for challenges, opportunities, workshops, pilot initiatives, and other potential programs anticipated to advance areas of science within biomedical and behavioral research. The Common Fund is intended to support short-term, high-risk initiatives with the potential for high impact. To this end, NIH requests that submissions consider the potential impact on human health as well as the expected results within 5-10 years. The deadline for submissions is August 11. 

NIH Seeking Feedback on Plan to Enhance Public Access to Research

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released a Plan to Enhance Public Access to the Results of NIH-Supported Research, a direct response to the August 2022 memorandum from the White House directing federal research agencies to make publications and data from federally funded research publicly accessible (see previous COSSA coverage). The plan outlines the agencyā€™s proposed actions to make NIH research more publicly accessible, especially in regard to research data and scholarly publications. In addition, NIH will be accepting feedback on the public access plan, with particular interest on the following topics: Comments will be accepted through April 24,…

OMB, Stakeholders Preparing for Changes to Race and Ethnicity Standards

As previously reported by COSSA, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is in the process of revising and modernizing their race and ethnicity standards that were last updated in 1997. The Interagency Technical Working Group on Race and Ethnicity Statistical Standards is hosting a series of Town Halls to receive feedback from the public on the initial proposals. The Town Halls are scheduled for Tuesday, March 14 at 2pm ET, Friday, March 17 at 2pm ET, and Saturday, March 18, at 2pm ET. Registration has not yet opened but will be available here. OMB will also record the sessions…

OSTP and BJS Requesting Feedback on Criminal Justice Statistics

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) within the Department of Justice have released a request for information regarding the collection of criminal justice data and statistics. The request seeks to inform the Biden Administrationā€™s practices on data collection, use, and transparency and will aim to identify how to provide guidance to law enforcement agencies. The request builds off of a previous Executive Order (E.O. 14074) on Advancing Effective, Accountable Policing and Criminal Justice Practices to Enhance Public Trust and Public Safety. Comments will be accepted through March 30, 2023….

White House Seeks Input on Update to AI R&D Plan

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) is seeking input on updates to the National Artificial Intelligence (AI) Research and Development Strategic Plan. The most recent update to the plan (2019) sets out 8 strategic aims for AI R&D: Make long-term investments in AI research. Develop effective methods for human-AI collaboration. Understand and address the ethical, legal, and societal implications of AI. Ensure the safety and security of AI systems. Develop shared public datasets and environments for AI training and testing. Measure and evaluate AI technologies through standards and benchmarks. Better understand the national AI R&D workforce…

OMB Requests Input on Standard Application Process for Accessing Federal Data

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has issued a request for comments on the recommendations of the Interagency Council on Statistical Policy (ICSP) regarding the implementation of a standard application process for accessing confidential federal data (which may be downloaded here). The ICSP report, which was written in response to requirements in the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act of 2018 (ā€œEvidence Act,ā€ see previous coverage), outlines considerations for applying to access confidential statistical data, agency review of applications, and an appeals process for applications that are denied. OMB is particularly interested in receiving comments on the proposal…

Census Seeking Comment on New ā€œAsk U.S.ā€ Opinion Panel

The Census Bureau is seeking approval for a new nationally representative survey panel called ā€œAsk U.S.,ā€ to be used for ā€œtracking public opinion on a variety of topics of interest to numerous federal agencies and their partners, and for conducting experimentation on alternative question wording and methodological approachesā€ as well as potentially collecting ā€œnationwide rapid-response data to address emerging data needs.ā€ Public comment is being accepted on the new activity, which will also be coordinated with the Economic Research Service, Bureau of Labor Statistics, National Center for Education Statistics, and the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, among other…

Census Bureau Seeking to Extend and Expand Business Pulse Survey

Building on the success of the Census Bureauā€™s Small Business Pulse Survey, a continuous, frequently-updated survey instituted to measure the impact of the pandemic on small businesses, the Census Bureau is seeking public comment on a plan to establish a new Business Pulse Survey that will extend the existing survey sample to include all businesses. The Bureau is asking for three-year approval for the Business Pulse Survey, which will be a ā€œcontinuous near real time data publication [that] will provide a baseline of the U.S. economy and will measure change as a result of current and future economic shocks.ā€ While…

OSTP Launches ā€œChallengeā€ for Advancing Equity in STEM

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has announced an open invitation for ideas to improve equity in science and technology. Input is being gathered through an ā€œIdeation Challenge,ā€ which allows anyone to offer insight into the central question, ā€œHow can we guarantee all Americans can fully participate in, and contribute to, science and technology?ā€ While there is no winner or prize, ideas will be evaluated and refined by OSTP for potential incorporation into the White Houseā€™s strategy for advancing equity in science and technology. The challenge is open through November 19. More information is available on…

New House Social Determinants of Health Caucus Seeks Stakeholder Input

A newly formed Congressional Social Determinants of Health Caucus is seeking the publicā€™s input on challenges and opportunities related to social determinants of health. The bipartisan caucus, which held a launch event on July 21, is co-chaired by Representatives Cheri Bustos (D-IL), Tom Cole (R-OK), G.K. Butterfield (D-NC), and Markwayne Mullin (R-OK). The caucus ā€œwill explore opportunities to improve the impact of services delivered to address social determinants with the support of federal fundingā€ and ā€œwork to amplify evidence-based approaches to holistic well-being.ā€ The request for information asks stakeholders to respond to a list of questions relating to how to…

NIAAA Requesting Input on 2022-2026 Strategic Plan Outline

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has issued a Request for Information inviting feedback from stakeholders on the outline of the upcoming NIAAA Strategic Plan for Fiscal Years (FY) 2022-2026. The strategic plan outline, which is included in the request, contains several cross-cutting themes including promoting health equity and diversity in alcohol research spaces, identifying unique risks for alcohol misuse, advancing research on co-occurring conditions with alcohol misuse, supporting new technologies on diagnosis of alcoholism, increasing the use of data science in alcohol research, and encouraging collaboration between alcohol research…

White House Seeks Input on Scientific Integrity Policies

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has issued a request for information (RFI) on ways to improve the effectiveness of federal scientific integrity policies, in support of President Bidenā€™s January 27Ā Memorandum on Restoring Trust in Government Through Scientific Integrity and Evidence-Based Policymaking (see previous coverage). OSTP has convened an interagency task force of the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) that will conduct a review of the governmentā€™s science integrity policies. To inform this effort, OSTP seeks information about: ā€œ(1) The effectiveness of federal scientific integrity policies and needed areas of improvement; (2) good practices federal…

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