Award for Excellence in Human Research Protection
Program Description

Purpose of Award

Health Improvement Institute (“Institute”) established the Award for Excellence in Human Research Protection  in 2001 to encourage and to recognize excellence and innovation in human research protection. The Office for Human Research Protections (of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) was the founding sponsor of the Award program.



The Institute has established three award categories:



Award entries are evaluated by credentialed judges who volunteer their time to the Award program. The Judges Credentialing Committee determines whether or not a person who applies to become a judge meets established judge credentialing criteria. For each category of Award, the Institute forms separate panels of credentialed judges, to the extent possible, to represent different aspects of the research enterprise (e.g., based on judges’ current position, geographic location, etc.). Judges evaluate Award applications against established Award criteria and record their evaluations on a structured form. The Institute recognizes applications judged to be excellent with an Award of Excellence. The most worthy application wins, if any, the Annual Award for the category. The Institute announces winners of Awards in December. 


Award Advisory Board

Award Advisory Board (AAB) provides advice on all aspects of the Award program. The AAB consists of representatives of organizations that hold important roles in or related to the research enterprise, such as, research sponsors/funders, researchers/research institutions, human research protection professionals, research study participants, consumer or research participant advocates, and voluntary associations concerned with health care, diseases, treatments, and research.


Award Steering Committee

Award Steering Committee (ASC) provides advice and feedback to the Award program coordinator and staff on operational matters, such as appointing members to implementing committees, improving the Award program structures, establishing policies and procedures, and drafting Award program materials.


Judges Credentialing Committee

The Institute invites and accepts applications to serve on the Judges Credentialing Committee (JCC) year around. Members of Award Steering Committee evaluate applicants’ qualifications against established JCC credentialing criteria.  The Institute selects JCC members to evaluate applications to become a judge.  


Health Improvement Institute

The Institute is a tax‑exempt, 501(c) 3 research and educational organization that gives national Awards, conducts forums on emerging treatments, and undertakes other programs toward fulfilling its mission of enabling informed health care decision-making.