This pilot program was designed to provide College of Medicine faculty an added level of support when developing research proposals for submission to external funding sponsors. The program leverages the expertise of Hanover Research, a global research and grants development firm based in Washington, D.C., to provide a third-party review of grant proposals before they are submitted to an external funding sponsor.

How does the program work?Hanover Logo_Proposal Review web page

To be eligible for the program, the PI of the grant proposal must have a faculty appointment at the College of Medicine. To request the service, PIs must submit a completed Project Request Form to Research Development, which manages the pipeline of projects. Research Development’s contract with Hanover Research is capped at six (6) concurrent projects, which means our ability to accept a project is based on current pipeline capacity. Hanover can touch a proposal up to two (2) times based on any combination of the following services:

Proposal Review_Updated Hanover Service Table2


Hanover FAQs

Yes. Hanover has experience with a wide range of funders – private, nonprofit, and federal – including but not limited to the NSF, NIH, AHRQ, DOD, and PCORI. 

The pilot program allows for six (6) projects to be active at any given time. Research Development selects the projects placed in Hanover’s queue. Factors taken into consideration when selecting projects includes current project volume, anticipated grant request ($), funding sponsor, and proposal submission deadline.

To request this service, the PI must complete and submit a Project Request Form.

A Hanover grants consultant may address general scientific elements of a proposal, such as:

  • Construct or structure of the hypothesis and methodology. While Hanover does not purport to provide “scientific reviews” that evaluate the specific science underpinning proposals, its grants consultants will flag where they think research questions, aims, and hypotheses could be strengthened and better aligned.
  • Literature review. Hanover grants consultants will note places where a citation is needed and has not been included. 
  • Clarity and focus. When they suspect that narrative content lacks sufficient clarity, consistency, or rigor, Hanover grants consultants will pose questions to encourage the PI to verify the science, and/or suggest a review by a senior colleague or program officer.

All documents are shared with Hanover via secure File Transfer Protocol (FTP) to protect the exchange of confidential information.

This pilot program receives generous financial support from the Office of the Vice Dean for Research and Graduate Studies. There is no cost to the individual PI.

Hanover focuses on narrative components of a research proposal. For reviews and revisions, most PIs submit the abstract, specific aims, and research strategy. For a resubmission of a previously unfunded proposal, PIs should plan to submit a copy of their original proposal along with the summary statement. PIs are welcome to provide Hanover additional narrative components (e.g. facilities and resources, biosketches, resource sharing plan). Please advise the Research Concierge Service if you plan to submit additional narrative components.

Research Development will review the Project Request Form and contact the PI to discuss her/her project and collectively determine the optimum approach for utilizing Hanover’s services. If selected for the Hanover queue, the PI will be directed (via email) to provide proposal documents to Research Development’s Research Concierge Service by a specific cut-off date. The Research Concierge Service serves as the PI’s point of contact throughout the entire process and will coordinate all services provided by Hanover.

The turnaround time for Hanover’s services varies by service type. A REVIEW is generally turned around 10 business days from the date Hanover receives all requested grant documents through the secure FTP site. A REVISION provides an added level of support and as such, is generally turned around 15 business days from the date Hanover receives all requested grant documents.

Hanover Research has the expertise to review a wide range of proposals, from individual grants (e.g. K, R01) to program project, center, and training grants. For resubmissions of previously unfunded proposals and competing renewal applications, PIs will be asked to provide a copy of the original submission along with reviewers’ comments (e.g. summary statement).

Please direct questions to Jennifer Schaefer, Research Concierge Administrator for the CoM at or ext. 289352.

To be eligible for the program, the PI of the grant proposal must have a faculty appointment at the College of Medicine.