Executive Committee Expert Reviews
An issue that has been identified for larger-scale proposals is the potential for conflicts of interest to affect discussions adversely; with a limited number of experts in any subject area, even one or two conflicts can reduce significantly the available expertise. As a means of mitigating those impacts, STScI solicits proposal reviews from community subject experts for the Large, Treasury and Legacy proposals to be discussed by the Executive Committee. Typically, about 85-100 proposals will fall into this category.
The recruitment and proposal assignments follow the same process and mechanisms as in recruiting TAC members. Each proposal typically receives 4-5 reviews, and each expert is assigned 4-6 proposals. The reviewers do not grade the proposals, nor do they provide a relative ranking. They are asked to provide qualitative feedback in the following format:
- What are the major and minor strengths of the proposal?
- What are the major and minor weaknesses of the proposal?
In providing that feedback they should consider the three primary review criteria:
- What impact will the results have on the subject area?
- Are there significant impacts beyond the immediate sub-field?
- Does the proposed require the unique capabilities of JWST?
Dual-anonymous review protocols are maintained throughout. The Executive Committee is given access to these reviews, but not to the identity of the reviewers.