Best Practices in Peer Review (Infographic)
November 2023

Based on the Review Quality Assurance (RQA) processFootnote *, CIHR would like to share a list of review quality issues that were identified and should be avoided in peer review.

Comments by reviewers to avoid Guidance

Using gendered language

Use gender-neutral pronouns or gender-inclusive phrases:

“they” or “the applicant”, instead of “she” or “he”
“Dr.” or “Professor” instead of “Mr./Mrs. /Miss.”
“Parental leave” instead of “maternity/paternity leave”

Eligibility concerns

Flag to CIHR staff.
Do not include comments in reviews.
Should not influence the rating.

Missing attachments

Inform CIHR staff as soon as possible so they can investigate.
This step ensures all comments on grant content are factually correct.

“Should not be funded”
“Should be in different committee”

Do not include funding recommendations in reviews.
Committee mandate questions should be referred to CIHR staff.

Number of publications or research grants to assess productivity (in isolation)

Consider a broad range of research contributions and impacts.

Journal-based metrics
(e.g. impact factors)

Focus on scientific content or quality of impacts.

Sharing committee panel information

Committee membership lists are confidential / published on the CIHR website 60 days after the funding decision.
Do not reveal committee members on social media or to colleagues.

Please see CIHR's Conducting Quality Reviews learning module for additional guidance related to review quality.

Date modified: