FYI from the NHLBI Index
January 2009: Vol. 9, Issue 3
NIH's New RCDC System
NIH's New RCDC System - A Brief Overview
The NIH is preparing to launch the new RCDC (Research, Condition, and Disease Categorization) public reporting
Web site, which will provide a detailed account of NIH funding in 215 categorical areas.
The RCDC system uses a computerized process to identify grants, contracts, and intramural research projects that
are relevant to specified research areas, conditions, and diseases. The system applies consistent definitions across all
of the NIH's 27 Institutes and Centers (ICs), in contrast to the previous approach in which each IC categorized the
research it funded according to its own definitions. Congress mandated the system change, which has been enabled by
advances in data- and text-mining computer technology. The RCDC system generates an NIH-wide report for Congress and
the public on the 215 categories.
You may notice differences from previous years in the reported funding for your area(s) of interest. If so, please
keep in mind that the difference is a reflection of the change in the reporting approach rather than a sudden change in
NIH appropriations or priorities. Also please note that as with the previous reporting approach, the numbers generated
by the RCDC system will not add up to (and will almost certainly exceed) the total NIH budget because research projects
typically fall under more than one category.
RCDC system benefits include consistent, transparent funding figures and a more useful organization of research projects.
In addition, visitors to the RCDC Web site will be able to see all of the research projects in a particular category as
well as detailed information about each project, such its funding level, title, NIH support mechanism (i.e., grant,
contract, or intramural project), principal investigator(s), research institution at which it is to be conducted, NIH
project identifier number, and funding IC.
The RCDC Web site (http://report.nih.gov/rcdc/) contains more information on the categorization process, frequently
asked questions, and a contact email where you may direct questions. The RCDC funding data will be found on the
new RePORT (Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tool) Web site (http://report.nih.gov).
Please send us your feedback, comments, and questions by using the appropriate link on the page, Contact the NHLBI.
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