Activities of the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research (NCCOR) have led to plans for a new nationwide study that will examine outcomes associated with characteristics of community programs and policies to reduce childhood obesity rates. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) – in collaboration with NCCOR funders – is soliciting proposals for a Research Coordinating Center (RCC) to lead a research program titled “Studying Community Programs to Reduce Childhood Obesity.” A Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) No. NHLBI-HC-10-15 was released Aug. 18. The deadline for proposals is Nov. 18, and the contract will be awarded about one year from now.
The purpose of this initiative is to support a nationwide scientific study of communities that vary in their local programming and policies addressing childhood obesity. Such local efforts can include educational, behavioral, environmental, and/or other activities aimed at influencing energy balance in youth through diet and physical activity. The intent is to fund one study, where a nationwide sample of communities will be identified, data obtained, and analyses conducted. This solicitation will not fund community programs because the purpose is to assess what is already going on in communities around the nation.
The funded RCC will work in close partnership with members of NCCOR to design and implement the research. The goal is to inform public-health practice and policy by identifying community approaches that may work best for reducing childhood obesity rates. The study will also help identify future research directions.
A Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) is a type of Funding Opportunity Announcement that is used by the government when an objective has been identified, but the specific approaches are to be defined by experts submitting proposals. The intent of a BAA is to encourage the submission of creative and innovative approaches to specific research areas identified by the Government. A proposal submitted in response to this BAA must present detailed technical and business plans designed to meet the BAA’s research and technical objectives.
NCCOR members are excited by this opportunity to partner fully on an important scientific study that can provide very valuable information – information that should be extremely helpful to local communities in their efforts to address the problem of growing rates of childhood obesity.