Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), as a signatory of the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), has made a formal commitment to fair and responsible research assessment practices.  

To this end, SFI is changing the way its review process assesses the quality and impact of research outputs, by moving away from journal impact factors, the h-index and other types of metrics, towards a broader, more holistic view of researchers’ achievements. To support this, SFI has introduced the narrative CV format to all programme funding calls from 2019 onwards, where applicants are instructed to describe their research achievements in four key areas: generation of knowledge, development of individuals and collaborations, contributions to the research community, and contributions to society and the economy. 

By using this format, SFI is prioritising the content/quality of publications in the evaluation process over the publication venue. Qualitative indicators of impact are also being considered, including a researcher’s contributions to developing the next generation of research talent, to society, the economy and research community, and evidence of facilitating a positive research culture. The use of open science principles and approaches, such as preprints, open-source software, and data publication, are also being evaluated, where SFI is a founding signatory of Plan S. SFI continuously collects data on this DORA aligned review and evaluation process, thus informing iterative improvements to this and related policy.  

By using the narrative CV, SFI is supporting global efforts to shift the culture of research assessment away from journal-based metrics and improving the way outputs of scientific research are viewed and evaluated. 

Further information about how SFI are implementing DORA in our grant review process can be found here.