Tenure at the NIH consists of a permanent position and a long-term commitment of salary, personnel, and the research resources needed to conduct an independent research program within the scope of the Institutes' mission.
Intramural scientists obtain tenure in one of two ways:
- Tenure positions. The scientist is recruited from outside NIH for a tenured position after having compiled an extensive research record at another institution or
- Tenure-track positions. The scientist enters a tenure-track position after extended research experience at NIH or elsewhere. This experience should be sufficiently extensive to allow thorough evaluation of an individual's potential as a tenure-track scientist.
Candidates for both tenure and tenure-track positions are selected by a search committee and approved by the Deputy Director of Intramural Research, NIH. Tenure-track candidates are given 6 years to establish themselves as independent scientists before being evaluated for tenure. The NIAMS Board of Scientific Counselors reviews the candidate's performance and qualifications for tenure at the midpoint of the tenure-track clock and decides whether the candidate should be continued in tenure-track, dropped from track, or advanced for tenure decision.
Tenure is recommended by the NIAMS Board of Scientific Counselors and Laboratory Chief. The tenure candidate will come before the NIAMS Promotions and Tenure Committee, which advises the Scientific Director of the IRP, on whether to grant tenure. If the committee recommends tenure and the Scientific Director and Director of NIAMS concur, the request is forwarded to the NIH Central Tenure Committee, which is chaired by the Deputy Director for Intramural Research, NIH, for approval.