Ranking the NIH recipients in US medical schools

Feb 17 2011 Published by under Diversity in Science, NIH, NIH Careerism

The Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research has posted a series of ranking tables based on NIH awards in Fiscal Year 2010. Unfortunately it is by total costs (direct plus indirect) so there will be some bias depending on the negotiated indirect cost rate.

I took a look at the PI lists in Basic Science and identified the number of women listed in the top 25:
Anatomy/Cell Bio: 8
Biochemistry: 2
Genetics: 3
Microbiology: 1
Neuroscience: 2
Pharmacology: 2
Physiology: 1

Not so good. Okay, what's my best bet here from the clinical departments? hmm, how about:

Clinical OB/GYN: 8
Family Med: 9
Pediatrics: 9
Psychiatry: 9

I may have miscounted one name or so per list but no worse that that. And yeah, I know we talk about he dismal stats for women in science all the time, and how as the pyramid narrows it gets worse and worse. But it sure does have some umph to look at the numbers again, doesn't it?

38 responses so far

  • Dr. O says:

    Well below 10% in a lot of those areas - not so good at all.

    I see that they have ranking by school as well. (If someone had the time) it would be interesting to see how many women are employed at the top-ranked schools. In other words, are women not getting the big $$$ because they're not finding their way into the "right" programs?

  • ginger says:

    Public Health, which is one of those fields like O&G and Peds where people talk all the time about how women dominate? Yeah. Five. Great.

  • Heavy says:

    Eye opening in many ways, thanks for this post.

    Too bad for Traci Wilgus, she only got $1 in 2010!

  • becca says:

    Dude, is it totally sick and twisted I just downloaded the file of ALL 36,000ish NIH investigators that got funding in 2010 and started searching on all the names I know?

    Also, how the HECK does anybody get 50 million NIH dollars???

  • They also aren't breaking out the subproject money for P01 mechanisms. So my lab looks poor and our collaborator looks like Daddy FuckingWarBucks.

  • becca says:

    @Genomic Repairman OH! I knew carebear's PI was good, but I didn't think he was *that* good. All is clear now.

  • DrugMonkey says:

    Yes becca, that is sick and twisted. Who would DO something like that?

  • DrugMonkey says:

    $50M? Is that the head of a CTSA? Or some major Center?

  • becca says:

    In fairness, if we get an HIV vaccine outta him, $50 million might be considered a pretty great deal.

  • DrugMonkey says:

    It would be a good deal at three times the price.

  • whimple says:

    In fairness, if we get an HIV vaccine outta him, $50 million might be considered a pretty great deal.
    How long are you going to let him keep trying for at $50M per year?

  • Whimple this isn't just him, that fat fricking grant funds many researchers and cores and CHAVI, including large scale non-human primate studies, site work in Africa, and clinical trials. So its not like he is just play with $50M each year, its getting doled out to other researchers.

  • whimple says:

    Awesome! So... how long you going to keep paying the $50M/yr? Indefinitely?

  • I don't know, I leave that up to those that are in charge of reviewing/funding proposals. How long should we keep paying for your research?

  • frank lee says:

    though I know this study was brought up for more serious purposes.. the full .xls file with every single PI gives me the most fantastic guilty thrill.

  • whimple says:

    I don’t know, I leave that up to those that are in charge of reviewing/funding proposals.
    You mean, leave that decision up to the other HIV vaccine bunny-hoppers? 🙂

  • DrugMonkey says:

    How much do those super new Joint Strike Fighters go for with maintenance and personnel over time whimple?

  • rachel says:

    Frank,

    Very nice comment. I can attest to your excellent and conscientious use of public moneys.
    Good luck to you!.

  • rachel says:

    And you are a much earlier bird than Drugmonkey !

  • whimple says:

    How much do those super new Joint Strike Fighters go for with maintenance and personnel over time whimple?
    I don't know. Is it more than the 135 full-modular R01s you could buy for $50M/yr?

  • drugmonkey says:

    According to Wikipedia the hardware cost alone for that fancy new jet fighter approximates 10 years of the entire NIH budget. So whimple, I'd trade that whole friggin program (which is a single weapons "system" of dubious need, I'll note) for a 50% upgrade in the size of the NIH for 20 years. We should be able to continue that AIDS vaccine program for a good while on that....

    You know, talk about winning hearts and minds. I don't know that an AIDS vaccine is in the cards but just *one* major disease or condition stomped out is worth one hell of a lot of bombing other countries into the stone age, knowhatimsayin?

  • drugmonkey says:

    Is it more than the 135 full-modular R01s you could buy for $50M/yr?

    Just so we're clear, I'm no fan of Big Mech and UltraMech boondoggles. They are the only way to get *some* things done but on the whole I'd say we could stand to pare those back. If I was running the zoo and all...

  • anon says:

    DM,

    Your observation of under representation of women in the top 25 of each category is interesting and informative. But this seems to contradict the NIH itself, which boasts that women (although they make up a third of their applicants at the R01 level) seem to be awarded at the same rate as men and at the same level in terms of funding amounts. Am I wrong about this or is somebody miscalculating?

  • drugmonkey says:

    Same success rate perhaps but I don't think I've seen an argument that women have the same level of funding. In fact quite the contrary. I think there was a post on Blue Lab Coats that addressed this disparity awhile ago...ah yes

    http://bluelabcoats.wordpress.com/2008/12/30/nih-for-girls-nih-for-boys/

  • PINUS says:

    most of the top #'s are from people who run large PPGs, centers, etc. (at least from my quick perusal of my field).

    also, it was fun to see my name on the list.

  • anon says:

    Thanks for the link. Still, this is at odds with what the NIH reports:

    http://report.nih.gov/NIHDatabook/Charts/Default.aspx?showm=Y&chartId=175&catId=15

    I realize other R01 "equivalents" are included within this data, but the data show that women are consistently awarded slightly MORE than men. I don't know how this data would change if other award types were taken out of the equation. Nor do I understand why there is such a huge disparity between these data right in front of us (Blue Ridge and your link to Blue lab coats) and what the NIH is reporting here. WTF.

  • drugmonkey says:

    the top-25 data are heavily skewed by Big-Mech grants scored to the overall Program Director, I would think. Centers, Program Projects and U-mechs.

    the study described in the Blue Lab Coats post makes it clear they adjusted for age, career status, subdiscipline, degree...I don't think the NIH data make any such adjustments. It is possible that if the very top men are depending more on Big Mechs (and less on R-mechs) and the top women are limited to R-mechs then you could get this effect that looks like an advantage for women.

    it would be interesting to see the overlap in the distributions...

  • becca says:

    Slide 14 is illuminating on the issue of center grants http://report.nih.gov/WRTAS/WRTAS.pdf
    but the thing drdrA posted is clear- ~30% of the total discrepancy in funding by gender is related to the very high rollers (>~8 million)- for practical purposes, center grants.

  • Neuro-conservative says:

    Hey Whimple -- Check this out (large download).

    Looks like those HIV-vaccine bunny-hoppers have been busy -- four of the top 10 awards, totalling $117,861,048, are for HIV vaccine.

    In fact, a Project Reporter search for HIV vaccine turns up 1300 grants totalling $1.25 billion.

    That's about the same as the total extramural grant portfolio of NINDS or NIMH.

    Keep those bunnies hoppin'!

  • drugmonkey says:

    You folks do know that a lot of HIV funding is by Congressional order? One way to look at it is that if it weren't going to this research it would be going elsewhere in the federal outlay, not necessarily the NIH.

  • Neuro-conservative says:

    What Congress giveth, Congress can taketh away. AFAIK, every IC is required by law to have a non-negligible percentage of funding devoted to HIV/AIDS. Ditching that requirement would help paylines for everyone else.

  • DrugMonkey says:

    What I'm saying N-c is that the AIDS money is extra. So you shouldn't think of it being carved out of the budgets but as of being added on...

  • whimple says:

    DM, money is the ultimate fungible resource. There's no such thing as "extra money".

    In fact, a Project Reporter search for HIV vaccine turns up 1300 grants totalling $1.25 billion. That’s about the same as the total extramural grant portfolio of NINDS or NIMH.

    They had a feature on Q-radio (Canadian) the other day about how MRSA now kills as many Americans annually as HIV does, but a look through Reports shows $77M in MRSA funding, vs 1250M for HIV. HIV sure has some energetic bunnies.

  • DrugMonkey says:

    So does cancer, whimple...

  • physioprof says:

    That’s about the same as the total extramural grant portfolio of NINDS or NIMH.

    And those fuckeasses ain't curing jacke diddly dicke.

  • whimple says:

    So does cancer, whimple…
    Cancer isn't in the NIAID portfolio, whereas both HIV and MRSA are.

  • Isis the Scientist says:

    $50 million can buy a buy a nice Bentley each year. AmIRite, DM?

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