Questions and Answers

RFA-CA-19-054: Cancer Intervention and Surveillance Modeling Network (CISNET) (Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

Question 1: Site Hosting Costs

In the travel section of the RFA, there is a sentence that says "Since the mid-year meetings are generally held at a common location to facilitate modelers who are part of more than one cancer type, each application should budget to host one meeting during that five-year period." Could you please describe what costs should be included? Can you clarify what is meant by "each application should budget to host one meeting"?

Answer:

By each application, we mean 3-6 modeling groups applying together to do modeling for a single cancer type. While we do not know this far in advance where the meeting will be, we would generally rotate the locations so that, "on average," each cancer type application would host one meeting per funding cycle (i.e., 5 years). Which particular modeling group (that is part of a specific cancer type application) would host would depend on the specific locations selected. NCI (or a designated contractor of NCI) would provide meeting support to include creating and maintaining a registration website and preparing meeting materials (including preparation of agendas, name tags, list of attendees, signage, etc.) that would be sent to the site. The major necessary support is local administrative staff who can assist NCI (or its contractors) by finding and reserving conference space (including AV equipment), determining the best hotel to secure a room block, suggesting local transportation options (including shuttles if needed), etc. During the meeting, the host site would be expected to staff the meeting registration desk. Because the meeting is being sponsored by the local university faculty who are members of CISNET, in many cases conference space and the use of AV equipment can be provided "in kind". However, any actual fees would be paid by NCI or its contractors.

Question 2: Attachment 3

For Attachment 3 (Modeling Project Table) – this table is for proposed modeling projects by the area of coverage – meaning the 9 Targeted Priority Areas? Can you clarify: is Attachment 3 supposed to clarify proposed work? It is supposed to be referred to in Sub-Section D "Proposed Model Extensions, Applications and Comparative Modeling"?  Are there any particular problems or areas of clarification that motivated this extra attachment?

Answer:

Correct – The purpose of Attachment 3 is to summarize the modeling projects by area of coverage (in terms of the 9 targeted Priority Areas as well as where they fall along the cancer control spectrum). The attachment was not requested because of any particular problem. Its purpose is to allow reviewers to see at a glance what is discussed in Sub-Section D.

Question 3: Direct Cost Budget Limits

Do direct cost budget limits exclude sub-recipient F&A?

Answer:

From the NIH Grants Policy Statement:

2.3.7.1 Applications That Include Consortium/Contractual F&A Costs
For FOAs that include a direct cost limit, NIH policy excludes consortium/contractual F&A when determining if an applicant is in compliance with the direct cost limitation. This policy extends to all solicited and investigator-initiated applications and to all active announcements (Requests for Applications and Program Announcements), involving consortium/contractual F&A costs, regardless of budget amount or budget format (e.g., modular and non-modular). While consortium F&A costs may be requested and awarded, applicants should not consider these costs when determining if a budget exceeds a direct cost limit.