ODP Early-Stage Investigator Lecture

Our Early-Stage Investigator Lecture recognizes early-career prevention scientists who have not successfully competed for a substantial NIH-supported research project, but who have already made outstanding research contributions to their respective fields and are poised to become future leaders in prevention research.

Jacob Bor, ScD., SM

2018 Lecture Winner

Jacob Bor, Sc.D., S.M.
Assistant Professor and Peter T. Paul Career Development Professor in the Departments of Global Health and Epidemiology at Boston University School of Public Health

Lecture Title: The Promise and Pitfalls of HIV Treatment as Prevention: Quasi-Experimental Evidence From South Africa

About Dr. Bor

Jacob Bor, Sc.D., S.M., is an Assistant Professor and Peter T. Paul Career Development Professor in the Departments of Global Health and Epidemiology at Boston University School of Public Health. His research applies the analytical tools of economics and data science to the study of population health, with a focus on HIV treatment and prevention in southern Africa. Current research interests include chronic disease management in low-resource settings; economic spillover effects of HIV treatment; decision-making in HIV-endemic risk environments; population health impacts of social policy; and causal inference in public health research. His work has been published in Science, The Lancet, PLOS Medicine, Epidemiology, and Health Affairs. Prior to his graduate training at Harvard School of Public Health, Dr. Bor worked with an HIV-prevention NGO in Botswana, Lesotho, and South Africa. He is a faculty affiliate of Boston University’s Global Development Policy Center and junior faculty fellow at its Hariri Institute for Computing and Computational Science & Engineering. He is a Senior Researcher at the Health Economics and Epidemiology Research Office and a visiting researcher at the Africa Health Research Institute, both in South Africa.

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2018 Finalists

Colin G. Walsh, M.D., M.A.
Assistant Professor of Biomedical Informatics, Medicine, and Psychiatry
Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Annie-Laurie McRee, Dr.P.H. 
Assistant Professor, Division of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Health
Deputy Director, Healthy Youth Development, Prevention Research Center
University of Minnesota

Katrina Champion, Ph.D. 
Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council Early Career Fellow/Visiting Scholar
University of New South Wales, Sydney and Northwestern University

Eligibility Criteria


At the time of the nomination due date, the candidate must meet the NIH’s definition of an early-stage investigator (ESI). This means the candidate*:

  • Has completed a terminal research degree within the last 10 years.
  • Has not yet been awarded a substantial NIH-supported research grant.

* Federal government employees, including fellows and contractors, are not eligible.


Nominees should have:

  • Innovative and significant research accomplishments in applied prevention research in people and in areas that are relevant to the ODP’s mission.
  • Evidence of highly collaborative research projects, especially those that bridge disciplines to offer new approaches and ways of thinking in disease prevention research.
  • A track record of career advancement and evidence of leadership roles.

Applied Prevention Research Topics

Priority will be given to nominees conducting applied prevention research on any of the following:

  • Ten most common causes of death in the United States:
    1. Tobacco
    2. Overweight and obesity
    3. Poor diet
    4. Physical inactivity
    5. Alcohol misuse
    6. Exposure to microbial agents and/or toxic agents
    7. Motor vehicle accidents
    8. Injury and violence
    9. Risky sexual behavior
    10. Substance use
  • Methods and measurement research
  • Health disparities
  • Disease screening

Nomination Process


To nominate yourself or another person, you must submit (1) a letter of intent (LOI) and (2) a nomination package.

Step 1 - Letters of Intent (LOI)

An LOI to submit a nomination is required (nominees may self-nominate and submit their own LOIs). The LOI should be a 1-page MS-Word document and include:

  1. Nominee’s name, title, affiliation, and date of the terminal degree (Reminder: nominee must have received a terminal degree within the last 10 years.)
  2. eRA Commons ID
    1. Before submitting the LOI, researchers should make sure their New Investigator and ESI status are correctly marked in their eRA Commons profiles. If the status is incorrect, please contact the NIH eRA Service Desk to resolve the issue before submitting an LOI.
  3. Prevention research focus of nominee’s work.

Attach the LOI (as a Word document) to an email and send it to prevention@mail.nih.gov with the subject line “2018 ESIL Letter of Intent” no later than 11:59 p.m. on September 26, 2018.

Step 2 - Nominations

Nomination packages may be submitted by the nominee or the nominee’s mentor. Nomination packages must be a single PDF file that includes:

  1. NIH Biosketch including a link (URL) to the nominee’s My Bibliography in PubMed
    1. If you do not have a My Bibliography in PubMed, refer to these simple step-by-step instructions to save your citations in PubMed to a “My Bibliography.”
    2. Use the URL that PubMed automatically generates when you change your “My Bibliography” sharing setting to public.
  2. Letter of nomination (1,000 words or less) from a mentor or colleague familiar with the nominee’s work, addressing the nominee’s innovative contribution to the field of prevention research, crosscutting and collaborative nature of his/her research, trajectory of career development, and leadership strength. The strongest letters will demonstrate the lasting significance and impact of the nominee’s work to date.
  3. Two letters of endorsement from other mentors or colleagues. Letters of endorsement may be less encompassing than the letter of nomination, but should address similar themes.
  4. A PDF of a key, peer-reviewed article published in the past 12-month period, which is first-authored by the nominee. If in press, please provide a Word version of the accepted paper and the letter of acceptance from the journal.

After compiling all the above elements into a single PDF file, attach the PDF to an email, and send it to prevention@mail.nih.gov with the subject line header “2019 ESIL Nomination” no later than 11:59 p.m. on October 27, 2018.

Review and Selection Process

  • Stage 1: The ODP assembles review panels composed of NIH staff with relevant expertise (informed by the nominations received). These content-area-specific panels perform the initial review of the nomination packages.
  • Stage 2: ODP staff reviews the recommendations from the content-area-specific panels and makes recommendations to the ODP Director.
  • Stage 3: The ODP Director reviews the recommendations and selects the finalists and the winner(s).