[The motivating context for this has been removed because subsequent developments made it obvious that it was such a unique event that my post would violate the confidentiality of all concerned. In both minor and major ways. -DM]
I keep meaning to talk about "member conflict" SEP review and there is no time like the present.
The general conflict of interest guideline are reviewed on this CSR document (see p.8). If you look at this CSR list of "other" study section rosters you will see that many of them contain "member conflict" in the title. I should note in this list that most of these are transient, convened-at-need study sections and the titles and alphanumeric designations are nearly meaningless, just concentrate on the SRO who tends to handle a certain set of SEPs over time.
"Member conflict" occurs when a grant contains a PI or other significant contributor who is a standing member of the regular study section to which that grant would otherwise be assigned. In the normal conflict situation, the reviewer in conflict simply leaves the room for the discussion of the application for which he or she is in conflict. However, when the member herself is on the application, it is assumed that due to the collegial working environment of the study section, her grant cannot be fairly reviewed. This makes a certain sense, particularly if you harken back to our bunny hopper discussion.
[sections deleted, see above DM]