May 20, 2022

Research Article: “Publications as Predictors of Racial and Ethnic Differences in NIH Research Awards”

The following article was recently published by PLoS ONE.


Publications as Predictors of Racial and Ethnic Differences in NIH Research Awards


Donna K. Ginther
University of Kansas

Jodi Basner
Discovery Logic/Clarivate Analytics

Unni Jensen
Discovery Logic/Clarivate Analytics

Joshua Schnell
Discovery Logic/Clarivate Analytics

Raynard Kington
Grinnell College

Walter T. Schaffer
National Institutes of Health


13(11): e0205929


This research expands efforts to understand differences in NIH funding associated with the self-identified race and ethnicity of applicants. We collected data from 2,397 NIH Biographical Sketches submitted between FY 2003 and 2006 as part of new NIH R01 Type 1 applications to obtain detailed information on the applicants’ training and scholarly activities, including publications. Using these data, we examined the association between an NIH R01 applicant’s race or ethnicity and the probability of receiving an R01 award. The applicant’s publication history as reported in the NIH biographical sketch and the associated bibliometrics narrowed the black/white funding gap for new and experienced investigators in explanatory models. We found that black applicants reported fewer papers on their Biosketches, had fewer citations, and those that were reported appeared in journals with lower impact factors. Incorporating these measures in our models explained a substantial portion of the black/white funding gap. Although these predictors influence the funding gap, they do not fully address race/ethnicity differences in receiving a priority score.

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About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.