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Supporting Informed Decision Making

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Data-driven decision making is a critical component of NCI’s research portfolio management and is equally important for policy development. CRS conducts portfolio analyses and collects data in areas including, but not limited to, scientific topics, funding mechanisms, and investigator characteristics associated with NCI and NIH grant applications and funded projects. These efforts provide the data needed for program management, policy making, and strategic planning.

Conducting Portfolio Analysis and Program Evaluation at NCI

CRS performs portfolio analyses for the NCI Office of the Director and NCI Divisions, Offices, and Centers (DOCs) across the institute. Each analysis is tailored to the specific research question or goal and is grounded in a solid understanding of NIH policy and data, as well as the context of the NCI budget and NCI’s position within NIH. CRS collaborates within NCI and across NIH to use the most appropriate and current data sources and tools available. Importantly, CRS presents analyses to support data-driven decision making clearly and concisely, with appropriate acknowledgement of caveats and limitations.

Program evaluation is a component of data-driven decision making and is often paired with portfolio analysis for this purpose. CRS consults with the NCI Office of the Director and the DOCs on evaluation-related projects, analyses, and requests. In addition, CRS conducts evaluation tasks for select priority areas and represents NCI in trans-NIH evaluation-focused efforts.

Planning and Evaluation (P&E) Activities at the NIH

As NCI’s central strategy office, CRS staff serve as the institute’s planning and evaluation (P&E) representatives (also known as P&E officers) to the NIH community. As NCI’s representative on the NIH P&E Committee, CRS collects and compiles information for legislatively mandated reports that demonstrate the progress of NIH biomedical research. The P&E-related activities performed by CRS aid in policy development and adherence, strategic planning, portfolio analysis, program evaluation, and monitoring research progress of NCI and NIH.

CRS staff also serve as the NCI’s Women’s Health Officers and represent NCI on the NIH Coordinating Council on Research in Women’s Health.

International Cancer Research Partnership

CRS leads NIH participation in the International Cancer Research Partnership, a consortium of worldwide cancer funding organizations dedicated to enhancing cancer funding information. Project data deposited in the International Cancer Research Portfolio by the partners provide a rich dataset that allows for a broader understanding of the global investment in cancer research and enables comprehensive analyses of the global cancer research ecosystem.

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