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My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

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My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby Bryant » Wed May 03, 2017 5:47 pm

Hi forum,

I am a 2nd-year postdoc (official title is research associate). I have been preparing for K99 application in October. My advisor asked me to draft 2 R01 proposals based on my K99 idea. Then he wanted to put me as a PI in one of the two R01 proposals, and submit them in June. I understand that he wants to boost my career and give enough credit to the one who does the work. However, I think my postdoc status is a huge disadvantage in the R01 application. Alternatively, he offers to transfer the R01 to me if it gets funded.

In summary, there are 3 options for me:
1) submit the R01 as a PI
2) submit the R01 under his name, and wait for the potential transfer
3) persuade him into giving up the R01 and let me submit a K99 in the next round

Any comments will be deeply appreciated.
Thanks
Bryant
Bryant
 
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Re: My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby MCJ » Wed May 03, 2017 8:55 pm

Bryant,

If you are planning to have an independent R01-driven research career, my advice would be to save this for a K99. A few reasons behind this: 1) it is unlikely that your institution will allow you to submit an R01 as a PI. If they do allow this, it is unlikely that a study section will deem you expert enough to run an R01-driven project because as a postdoc, you are not yet independent enough to demonstrate that you can run this research program. 2) if your current advisor is PI on the R01 with the thought of transferring to you down the road, there is a possibility that your institution will not allow the transfer (your PI does not own the R01 - it is awarded to the university/institution so they make the transfer decision). 3) Assuming you are listed as the PI and this gets awarded - it *may* be difficult to convince people evaluating your job application package (particularly if you are looking for a tenure-track job) that this entire research program was developed by you in your second year of a postdoc. Even if it is 100% true, I would envision skepticism. A K99 is generally deemed "your project" by a search committee. 4) Let's assume everything works perfectly and you are either awarded this R01 in your name or it gets transferred to you when you become independent. You will no longer be considered a "new investigator" for your first "real" R01 submission in your true independent position and will be fighting the uphill battle for a renewal. This is likely not something you would want to deal with in the first year or two of a new position. In my view the best bet is K99 where you can activate an R00, get adequate funding for a few years and still qualify as a new investigator when getting your first true R01 somewhere in year 2-4. This gives you the best chance for longer-term job stability and funding to get your research program up and running. Just my (academic-centric) view of the problem.
MCJ
 
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Re: My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby Bryant » Wed May 03, 2017 9:20 pm

MCJ wrote:Bryant,

If you are planning to have an independent R01-driven research career, my advice would be to save this for a K99. A few reasons behind this: 1) it is unlikely that your institution will allow you to submit an R01 as a PI. If they do allow this, it is unlikely that a study section will deem you expert enough to run an R01-driven project because as a postdoc, you are not yet independent enough to demonstrate that you can run this research program. 2) if your current advisor is PI on the R01 with the thought of transferring to you down the road, there is a possibility that your institution will not allow the transfer (your PI does not own the R01 - it is awarded to the university/institution so they make the transfer decision). 3) Assuming you are listed as the PI and this gets awarded - it *may* be difficult to convince people evaluating your job application package (particularly if you are looking for a tenure-track job) that this entire research program was developed by you in your second year of a postdoc. Even if it is 100% true, I would envision skepticism. A K99 is generally deemed "your project" by a search committee. 4) Let's assume everything works perfectly and you are either awarded this R01 in your name or it gets transferred to you when you become independent. You will no longer be considered a "new investigator" for your first "real" R01 submission in your true independent position and will be fighting the uphill battle for a renewal. This is likely not something you would want to deal with in the first year or two of a new position. In my view the best bet is K99 where you can activate an R00, get adequate funding for a few years and still qualify as a new investigator when getting your first true R01 somewhere in year 2-4. This gives you the best chance for longer-term job stability and funding to get your research program up and running. Just my (academic-centric) view of the problem.



Thanks a lot for your comments. Very helpful and insightful! I will continue trying my best to persuade him. However, he is very stubborn. Submission under his name is the most likely scenario to happen. But better than getting a triage under my name, anyway.
Bryant
 
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Re: My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby Craig B. » Thu May 04, 2017 9:43 am

A few thoughts:

1) Talk to your institution and department higher ups about the situation. You need to know what happens to you if either your K99 or a R01 application were to get funded. I was fortunate and had an R21 get funded as a postdoc, which led to a nontenure track position and a tenure track offer. I have a peer who's K99 application has been delayed a year because of departmental issues with his appointment. Departmental support is the main difference in our situations. It is critical that you understand whether or not your institution supports you now and in a future role.

2) I agree with Bryant RE: your PI transferring an award to your name. That's an easy promise to make, but more challenging to keep. I would be cautious.

3) Ks and Rs are different. The mentoring and career development plans are a huge component of K awards and nonexistent in Rs. The awards are reviewed by different study sections. While I agree that applying for a R01 as a postdoc will be a hard sell at review, your proposal may just be a better R application than a K.

4) If you submit a R01 as the PI, how's your PI involved? Is he a co-investigator?

5) If you have 2 proposals, assuming you iron out all of the issues, could you submit one as an R01 in your name and the second as a K99?
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Re: My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby Craig B. » Thu May 04, 2017 10:04 am

Bryant wrote:Thanks a lot for your comments. Very helpful and insightful! I will continue trying my best to persuade him. However, he is very stubborn. Submission under his name is the most likely scenario to happen. But better than getting a triage under my name, anyway.


If a grant is submitted and doesn't get funded in your name, you walk away with experience from the process and whatever scores you earned. It's in the record, and you can share it as evidence that you can write a competitive application (assuming it is). If your PI submits the grant in his or her name, its officially his or her grant and you have to trust that he or she will admit your role in the proposal development.

If your PI submits either of your applications, are you formally included in some capacity (e.g. as a co-investigator)?
Craig B.
 
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Re: My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby Bryant » Thu May 04, 2017 1:01 pm

Craig B. wrote:
Bryant wrote:Thanks a lot for your comments. Very helpful and insightful! I will continue trying my best to persuade him. However, he is very stubborn. Submission under his name is the most likely scenario to happen. But better than getting a triage under my name, anyway.


If a grant is submitted and doesn't get funded in your name, you walk away with experience from the process and whatever scores you earned. It's in the record, and you can share it as evidence that you can write a competitive application (assuming it is). If your PI submits the grant in his or her name, its officially his or her grant and you have to trust that he or she will admit your role in the proposal development.

If your PI submits either of your applications, are you formally included in some capacity (e.g. as a co-investigator)?


Craig,

Thanks for the suggestion. We are submitting 2 R01s (let's say A and B), and I was offered to be the PI of A. If I accept the deal, he would be the co-investigator on A. If I doe not accept the deal, I will be the co-investigator on both A and B, and he will transfer A to me if everything works 'perfectly'.

He probably will not allow me to submit either of them as a K99 because he wants to submit them this June, when the idea is still hot. I am not ready for K99 application because my original plan is a submission this October.

My current plan is to submit both R01s as a co-investigator, which will not affect my K99 application or new investigator status. Then, I can focus on developing my another project into a K99 proposal and pull all the things together (co-mentor, career plan, more papers, etc). Since this is my 2nd year, I still have some time to do this.

OMG, I have to say, academia is such a rough road.
Bryant
 
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Re: My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby D. Martin » Thu May 04, 2017 9:04 pm

First, Is this a troll post or a real one?

If you have a R01 ready to submit in June how can you say you are not ready for a K99? You will not considered an expert for an R01 but sure you will for a K99. There is not way he will transfer the money to you, it will not be allowed, they will not let you to take the money (and overheads). Also, does your title really allows you to be the PI in the grant?

finally, if you get the R01 (big IF) you lost your NI status before you started your faculty position, so that will hurt in the long run (and I wonder how easy the money will transfer, if even possible).

Also, he wants to advance your career and is your idea but can't be used as a K99... something makes no sense, or your PI is doing something fishy or you wrote a post assuming things.

In either case, sent it as a K99.
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Re: My advisor wants to put me as PI for R01

Postby Bryant » Fri May 05, 2017 10:57 am

D. Martin wrote:First, Is this a troll post or a real one?

If you have a R01 ready to submit in June how can you say you are not ready for a K99? You will not considered an expert for an R01 but sure you will for a K99. There is not way he will transfer the money to you, it will not be allowed, they will not let you to take the money (and overheads). Also, does your title really allows you to be the PI in the grant?

finally, if you get the R01 (big IF) you lost your NI status before you started your faculty position, so that will hurt in the long run (and I wonder how easy the money will transfer, if even possible).

Also, he wants to advance your career and is your idea but can't be used as a K99... something makes no sense, or your PI is doing something fishy or you wrote a post assuming things.

In either case, sent it as a K99.


This is not troll. In my mind, I am not ready for K99, not to mention R01. It is his idea to put me as a PI for R01. I keep saying no to that. According to our department, my title is fine for submission as a PI. Anyway, we finally reached an agreement to put him as PI for R01 yesterday. So I guess problem is solved.

He is fine with sending one of them as a K99, but he wants to submit both of them this June. However, I want to submit the K99 this October because I need more time to write the career development plan etc.

I will probably forget about the potential transfer thing, and submit a K99 based on another idea this October.
Bryant
 
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