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National Institutes of Health

Concept Clearances

A concept describes the basic purpose, scope, and objectives of a potential solicitation of grants or contracts. Most frequently, the concept will be developed into a Request for Applications (RFA) or Request for Proposals (RFP) — initiatives for which money has been set aside by the Institute to stimulate research in a well-defined scientific area in order to accomplish specific program objectives. A concept clearance is the process by which NIMH receives public advice on the merits of the potential solicitation. Approved concepts are posted on the NIMH website to alert researchers to NIMH interests and potential funding opportunities; however, budget constraints may prevent an approved concept from becoming an actual RFA or RFP. Furthermore, the actual solicitation may differ in certain details from its originating concept.

The National Advisory Mental Health Council (NAMHC) conducts most, but not all, NIMH concept clearances. Concepts may also be cleared through other public venues.

Please send questions regarding specific concepts to the program contacts listed in the concept description. Please address other comments to Jean Noronha at Some details about cleared concepts, like receipt dates, become available only upon NIMH issuing a Funding Opportunity Announcement.