What happens after submission

After the deadline, applications are processed by the research administration in Helse Sør-Øst RHF. Complete applications are sent on to the review committees while applications missing attachments, not fulfilling format criteria etc. may be rejected. 

Common guidelines for applications for all regional health authorities

All applications are evaluated by use of common guidelines for all regional health authorities. There are a total of 10 main points that include both scientific quality and impact. Impact in this contexts refers to the project's expected impact / benefit for patient care (short or long term) and / or disease prevention and / or health services organization and quality. The evaluation of quality and expected impact is performed by the committees in a single process. Each application is evaluated by at least two members of the review committees, who both have equal responsibilities. The applications are distributed randomly within the committee. 

The score from each committee member is normalized to adjust for possible different use of the ranking scale. 

See the overview of the criterias here

The review committees

The evaluation is subject to peer review committees which are composed of renowned scientists recruited both nationally and internationally. Members are recruited other health regions in Norway or from abroad only, and  all committee members are replaced on a regular basis. The committees consist of 37-40 members, 30-35% of these have an international background.

The individual review committees are set up to reflect the application classification into groups:

  • Clinical somatic research, incl. translational research

  • Clinical research in mental health and addiction, incl. translational research

  • Basic medical research with a translational perspective

  • Other health research fields*

*Research in public health, epidemiology, health services etc.

The principal investigator is responsible for assigning the applications to the correct group. The research administration at Helse Sør-Øst RHF cannot re-assign the application to a different group after the application deadline.

Further process

The peer-review committees meet in person to draw up a ranked shortlist for each committee. All applications will be discussed at these meetings and particular focus is given to applications having received relatively different scores by the reviewers. The committee leaders meet subsequently to draw up an amalgamated ranked list. Corporate auditors from Helse Sør-Øst RHF are also present at this meeting. The ranked list is presented at the Board Meeting.

The Regional Research Committee (RFU) assesses the process each year but is not presented with the ranked list. This list is approved of by “Samarbeidsorganet for Helse Sør-Øst og Universitetet i Oslo” and the board of the South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority make the final decision.

The list of successful applications is posted on the website of Helse Sør-Øst RHF immediately after the board meeting. At the same time, all applicants will receive a response to their applications.


Helse Sør-Øst RHF put strict demands on impartiality at all stages of the review process:

  • The members of the peer-review committees must declare partiality for every application

  • The Regional Research Committee (RFU) does not participate in the process because of potential conflicts of interest

  • Members of “Samarbeidsorganet for Helse Sør-Øst og Universitetet i Oslo” must consider partiality for all short-listed projects. Specific criteria have been set up for this procedure.


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