Research Funding Oversight

Since its founding, JDRF has built a research program that has placed the perspective of people living with type 1 diabetes (T1D) and their families at the center of the research funding process. Over the years, the amount of research that JDRF funds annually has exploded from a few hundred thousand dollars in those early years to more than an estimated $110 million in 2012. Along the way, JDRF itself has matured from a small start-up to a sophisticated global operation.

As JDRF’s internal scientific team has grown, our ability to lead and influence the global T1D landscape has been strengthened. But one thing hasn’t changed, and never will change: T1D patients and families, the volunteers who provide the funding, the passion, and the energy that has made JDRF the most successful and important force in the global T1D community, remain deeply integrated into the JDRF research program.

  Learn More About Volunteer Research Roles 


The Research Committee (RC)

The RC is a committee of the JDRF International Board of Directors. In fiscal year 2012 the RC consisted of 23 JDRF volunteers chosen annually by the chair of the JDRF IBOD based on input from the Nominating and Governance Committee and the RC chair. The RC has responsibility for approving both JDRF’s long-term and annual research strategy and priorities, approving the annual JDRF research budget, establishing metrics to monitor progress, and approving projects with a budget of more than $500,000.

These latter projects represent about 80 percent of total research dollars (projects under $500,000 are approved by the CEO but go through the same process and must meet the same standards as larger ones). Prior to approving a specific funding opportunity, the RC must determine that adequate due diligence was conducted, including both internal and external peer review, and that the project fits within the approved funding priorities and strategy for JDRF.

All members of the RC are volunteers, a fact that preserves and enshrines the guiding principle and hallmark of JDRF: that those who are most affected by the disease, and who have themselves raised the money for research, will determine how funds are spent.

  Learn More About the Research Committee (PDF)


The Type 1 Diabetes Voices Council (T1DVC)

The newly created T1DVC will break new ground in the area of volunteer engagement in the JDRF research program. For the first time, JDRF will have a body with a mandate to represent the broadest spectrum of views, concerns, and perspectives from across the entire T1D spectrum. Its members will include adolescents, young adults, and older adults with T1D, truly giving powerful meaning to the JDRF commitment to be relevant to people living with T1D at all ages and all stages of the disease.

But the T1DVC will go even further. It will include parents of both children and adults with T1D, spouses of persons with T1D, even siblings and grandparents of T1D patients. T1DVC members will be drawn entirely from JDRF chapters and international affiliates, a democratic selection process that will ensure that we build and sustain a vibrant pipeline of new volunteers. The T1DVC will meet three times a year and will give the RC, the IBOD, JDRF scientists, and JDRF-funded researchers systematic advice and counsel on where JDRF should focus its resources to meet the full panoply of needs and interests of the entire T1D community.

  Learn More About Type 1 Diabetes Voices Council (PDF)

  Meet The JDRF T1D Voices Council Members (PDF)


Peer Review of Research Opportunities

JDRF is committed to conducting extensive internal and external peer review as a predicate to funding any research effort. Our scientists see themselves as stewards charged with running the world’s most influential T1D research program and believe peer review is integral to a credible and effective research program.

The vast majority of all funds JDRF allocates undergo intensive peer review, sometimes on multiple occasions. The larger the funding opportunity, the more external review is built into the process. In fact, the level of scrutiny is more intense and thorough than ever before. Over the last few years alone, JDRF has increased the rigor of its external peer review requirements, our reviewer selection process, and the level of expertise of the reviewers themselves. We have even added reviewers outside the diabetes space to bring broader scientific perspective. Peer review is deeply imbedded into the JDRF research program and is seen by both the scientific team and JDRF’s professional and volunteer leadership as indispensable to operating the world’s largest and most highly regarded private T1D research program.

  Learn More About Peer Review (PDF)