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Physics of the Cosmos

Get Prepared for Dual-Anonymous Peer Reviews for all
NASA GO & GI Programs by 2021.

To reduce the impact of unconscious biases, NASA HQ is converting all General Observer & General Investigator (GO & GI) program peer reviews to a dual-anonymous format. Learn more about the context, timeline, implementation, and proposer guidelines from Dan Evans' presentation at the Oct 2019 Astrophysics Advisory Committee (APAC) meeting. This decision follows a pilot program for the Hubble Space Telescope peer review. For more details about dual-anonymous review practices, lessons learned & statistics from the pilot program, and how to prepare, see the presentations from the STScI Dual Anonymous Review Workshop Fall 2019.

The official announcement is provided below and here.

November 7, 2019

Dual-Anonymous Peer Review for Astrophysics General Observer / General Investigator Programs

Dear Colleague,

NASA is strongly committed to ensuring that the review of proposals is performed in an equitable and fair manner that reduces the impacts of any unconscious biases. To this end, and motivated by a successful pilot program conducted for the Hubble Space Telescope, Astrophysics General Observer / General Investigator (GO/GI) programs convert over the next year to dual-anonymous peer review, in which not only are proposers unaware of the identity of reviews, but the reviewers do not have explicit knowledge of the proposing teams and institutions.

The following table provides a timeline for the implementation of dual-anonymous peer review for Astrophysics GO/GI programs:

Format Program Anticipated Proposal Due Date
Traditional NICER Cycle 2 11/13/2019
Traditional TESS Cycle 3 1/16/2020
Dual-Anonymous (pilot) NuSTAR Cycle 6 1/24/2020
Traditional Fermi Cycle 13 2/19/2020
Dual-Anonymous Hubble Cycle 28 3/4/2020
Traditional Chandra Cycle 22 ~ 3/2020
Dual-Anonymous Webb Cycle 1 5/1/2020
Dual-Anonymous Swift Cycle 17 ~ 9/2020
Dual-Anonymous NICER Cycle 3 ~ 11/2020
Dual-Anonymous TESS Cycle 4 ~ 1/2021
Dual-Anonymous NuSTAR Cycle 7 ~ 1/2021
Dual-Anonymous Fermi Cycle 14 ~ 2/2021
Dual-Anonymous Hubble Cycle 29 ~ Spring 2021
Dual-Anonymous Chandra Cycle 23 ~ 3/2021

NASA understands that dual-anonymous peer review represents a major shift in the evaluation of proposals, and is committed to ensuring a smooth transition for the proposing community. Over the coming months, NASA SMD will summarize what other ROSES programs outside of GO/GI will adopt dual-anonymous peer review and release detailed documentation to the community, and will host a virtual town hall in early 2020 to discuss dual-anonymous peer review. Astrophysics missions will host additional documentation and guidance, and the mission Science Operations Centers will assist proposers with specific questions.


Paul Hertz
Director, Astrophysics Division
Science Mission Directorate

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