The first Boards of Scientific Counselors (BSCs), constituted of scientists from outside NIH, were established in 1956 to review intramural research at NIH. The Clinical Center's BSC was chartered in 1990. The BSCs were established to assist the Scientific Directors (SDs) and Institute or Center Directors (ICDs) in evaluating the quality of the intramural research programs for which they are responsible.
To assure that the BSCs' evaluations will be most useful to the institute or center leadership in their decision making, the BSCs must be composed of individuals who themselves have outstanding scientific credentials and who are committed to providing rigorous, objective reviews. Although the principal purpose of these independent evaluations is to advise the SDs and ICDs, the reports of the BSCs are also distributed to the Director, National Institutes of Health and the NIH Deputy Director for Intramural Research.