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Research, Development, and Evaluation Grant Award Requirements

Post-award requirements for research, development, and evaluation awards[1] are outlined below.

Information provided below is meant to provide applicants and grantees with guidelines on the various post-award requirements expected of NIJ grantees should they receive NIJ funding. Grantees should consult the funding solicitation, and their specific award special conditions for additional information on award requirements. For questions related to post-award requirements and how they pertain to an NIJ award, contact the assigned grant manager.

Data Archiving

Before the end of the grant award period, grant recipients must archive data according to the Data Archiving Plan approved by NIJ, and consistent with the approved Privacy Certificate and any other approved human subject protections documentation at NIJ’s National Archive of Criminal Justice Data (NACJD) website. Unless otherwise specified in writing by the NIJ grant manager, as authorized by the appropriate NIJ authority, data submission is required for all research, development, and evaluation awards, and the requirement may not be unilaterally modified or waived. Please see the grant agreement and grant award conditions for further information.

Once the data has been submitted for archiving, the data is embargoed for a period of 90 days to allow for data curation, preservation, and archiving.  No exceptions will be granted.

Grant recipients are strongly encouraged to submit data sets 90 days or earlier prior to the end of the award project period. NIJ may require grant recipients to modify data sets after initial submission to meet the specifications outlined in the grant program solicitation, grant agreement, according to archiving instructions, or due to concerns with data quality. Grant recipients are required to sufficiently address requests for modification in a timely manner, and therefore grantees should leave time within the grant award project period to make these adjustments.

Data deposits must include:

  • The Data Submission Checklist (pdf, 6 pages)
  • Data Archiving Plan (updated for project completion)
  • IRB approval, informed consent, and privacy certificate
  • Data (de-identified)
  • Documentation
  • Syntax
  • Bibliographies
  • Inventory of files
  • Other artifacts that NIJ may request.

For complete details, download the Data Submission Checklist and Secondary Data Analyst User's Guide (pdf, 6 pages).

Data specialists at NACJD review submitted data and documentation and provide a Deposit Review Report to the NIJ grant manager and the NACJD program manager.

If the data as initially submitted require further revision, the grant manager contacts the grantee with specific issues that the grantee, NACJD data specialist, and grant manager work to address. The data or related materials are then resubmitted.

Once approved by the NIJ grant manager, data are processed for inclusion in the archive[2] and fund withholding conditions are removed from the related grant. Once processed, the data are made available at an appropriate level of protection.

See the webinar video on Preparing, Archiving and Accessing Data and the Guide to Social Science Data Preparation and Archiving: Best Practice Throughout the Data Life Cycle (pdf, 45 pages).

Reporting Requirements

All organizations or individuals receiving funds from NIJ for research, development, and evaluation projects must submit their semi-annual progress report using the RPPR format. See Research Performance Progress Report Guidelines for NIJ Awardees for guidance on preparing these reports. NIJ will not accept semi-annual progress reports that do not conform to this format under research, development, and evaluation awards.

NIJ expects award recipients to generate scholarly products, such as peer-reviewed journal articles, law review articles, patents, and prototypes, as appropriate. In addition, awardees are required to submit a Final Research Report on, or before, the last day of the grant project period.

The Final Research Report should be a double-spaced manuscript that is well-developed, concise, and suitable for publication. Award recipients should expect that all or part of the final report will be made available to the public.

While there is no specific page limit, award recipients are strongly encouraged to produce succinct Final Research Reports with the expectation that overly long reports may be returned. Final Research Reports should be written in a manner that makes the content accessible to a broad audience which includes practitioners, policymakers, and other researchers.

The Final Research Report should include the following sections, which largely align to the RPPR format, but should be cumulative and prepared with public dissemination in mind.[3]

  • Cover Page with:
    • Federal award number (as it appears on the award document)
    • Project title (as it appears on the award document)
    • Project Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI)
      • Name
      • Title
    • Contact information (e-mail, address, and phone)
    • Award recipient organization (name and address)
    • Project period (as it appears on the award document)
    • Award amount (as it appears on the award document)
  • Summary of the project
    • Major goals and objectives
    • Research questions
    • Research design, methods, analytical and data analysis techniques
    • Expected applicability of the research
  • Participants and other collaborating organizations
  • Changes in approach from original design and reason for change, if applicable
  • Outcomes
    • Activities/accomplishments
    • Results and findings
    • Limitations
  • Artifacts
    • List of products (e.g., publications, conference papers, technologies, websites, databases), including locations of these products on the Internet or in other archives or databases
    • Data sets generated (broad descriptions will suffice)
    • Dissemination activities

Note that this reporting requirement does not apply to awards made under the Graduate Research Fellowship Program solicitations. For Graduate Research Fellows, the final deliverable is an official signed copy of the doctoral student's defended dissertation.

Recipients of grants issued prior to 2017 are expected to generate scholarly products, such as peer reviewed journal articles, law review articles, patents and prototypes, as appropriate. In addition, grantees are required to submit a Final Summary Overview. This Overview will summarize the research project and include sections that state the purpose, project subjects (if applicable), project design and methods, data analysis, findings, and implications for criminal justice policy and practice in the United States. The Draft Summary Overview should not exceed 10 double-spaced pages, and should be submitted 90 days prior to the project’s end date. The Final Summary Overview is due at the end of the grant project period. Grant recipients should consult their award agreement or contact their assigned grant manager for further information regarding these delivery requirements.

NIJ funding supports evaluability assessments (EAs). An EA is a systematic process used to determine if a program or project is ready for an evaluation; if modifications are required to increase readiness; and if an evaluation is justified and likely to provide useful information.  At the conclusion of an EA, NIJ makes documentation resulting from EAs public. This documentation would include site reports and final technical reports and exclude qualitative interview data. The awardee must ensure that all parties participating in EAs are in agreement with the public dissemination plan before work begins.

Human Subjects and Privacy Protection

All NIJ employees, contractors, and award recipients must be cognizant of the importance of protecting the rights and welfare of human subject research participants. All research conducted at NIJ or supported with NIJ funds must comply with all Federal, U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs, and NIJ regulations and policies concerning the protection of human subjects and the DOJ confidentiality requirements.

Find additional guidance regarding human subjects and privacy protection..

Participant Support Costs and Incentives

Participant support costs, which includes stipends, are allowable for some research projects funded by NIJ with the appropriate justification and approval. Participant support costs may include direct costs for items such as subsistence allowances, travel allowances, and registration fees paid to, or on behalf of, participants or trainees (but not employees) in connection with the proposed research study.

Find more information on participant support costs, including how to prepare a request for the use of incentives on an NIJ award.

Research and Evaluation Independence and Integrity

If an application proposes research (including research and development) and/or evaluation, the applicant must demonstrate research/evaluation independence and integrity, including appropriate safeguards, before it may receive award funds. The applicant must demonstrate independence and integrity regarding both the research and/or evaluation project proposed in response to the solicitation, and any current or prior related projects.

Learn more from OJP's Grant Application Resource Guide.

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Date Created: November 12, 2019