International peer review of proposals - Research support office


Research support office

In accordance with the NU Research Council Policies and Procedures all faculty members and researchers employed by NU are entitled to apply for grants from sources outside the University, including but not limited to grants administered by the government of the Republic of Kazakhstan. All external grants applications must be submitted on an institutional basis by NU. The NU Research Council made a decision that all proposals for external funding must undergo international peer review to ensure the quality and support NU brand of outgoing proposals. The Research Support Office works with the US-based peer review agency, ORAU that conducts independent peer review of proposals submitted by NU.

ORAU is a not-for-profit enterprise that has been working with universities, corporate entities since 1946. ORAU provides integrated scientific and technical expertise backed by specialized resources, unique laboratory capabilities, and a consortium of major research universities.

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The proposal is evaluated by three experts in the subject area based on following 8 criteria and on 9 point scale

(1 – bad, 9 – above average):

  • quality and originality/innovativeness
  • methodology and feasibility (inc. Plan and budget)
  • compliance with the priority areas of research (RoK)
  • science-based ethics
  • the applicant's competence and project participants
  • scientific infrastructure
  • international collaboration
  • sources/references (please refer to NU Evaluation Criteria)

Based on the results of the peer review, ORAU provides the evaluation report with detailed feedback from reviewers and the average score. Our office sends the evaluation reports to each principal investigator personally (the reports are anonymous – the reviewer’s name is held in confidence).

The peer review takes place annually two times per year (January, September). Proposal routing sheet is part of the application (it is mandatory for faculty members). The period of performance will be 75 (seventy five) calendar days from the date of receiving proposals from NU. In case of recruiting the fourth reviewer, the term of proposal peer review should be extended to 90 calendar days.