The University Record, January 14, 1998

96-97 research expenditures hit $458.5 million, another all-time high


By Wono Lee
News and Information Services

The University's research expenditures increased by 3.9 percent in 1996-97, reaching another record total of $458,478,301.

"By any common set of criteria--whether research expenditures, academic publications, or awards and fellowships per faculty member, for example--the U-M continues to rank among the top in the nation," Frederick C. Neidhardt, interim vice president for research, told the Regents at their December meeting.

"We are successfully competing for our share of the federal investment in research. When this growth is coupled with the recognition coming to Michigan for its success at involving undergraduates in research experiences, the result can be viewed as strengthening the ability of U-M to deliver an unusual education to its undergraduates."

Neidhardt noted that the University's total research expenditures have increased by 95.4 percent over the past decade, from $234.6 million in 1987-88 to $458.5 million in 1996-97. Real purchasing power of these expenditures (discounted for inflation) also has continued to increase, rising by 42.8 percent in constant (fiscal year 1988) dollars.

Of the U-M's 1996-97 total research expenditures, $300,447,504--or 65.5 percent--came from federal agencies.

Major funding agencies included the Department of Health and Human Services, $173,318,378; National Science Foundation, $43,456,477; Department of Defense, $32,758,026; NASA, $11,342,385; and the Department of Energy, $9,536,764.

Research support from non-federal sources accounted for $108,400,252, or 23.7 percent of the U-M total, and included $31,571,189 from industry and $76,829,063 from others, including voluntary contributions, trade and professional associations, foundations, state and local governments, and public charities. U-M funds accounted for 10.8 percent of the University's total research expenditures.

"These data reflect the rich diversity of research activities and capabilities that have earned the U-M the distinction of the nation's leading public research university," Neidhardt said.

"Increases in annual expenditures in support of research demonstrate the continued leadership of the University in the discovery of new knowledge and in the application of the leading-edge technologies for the benefit of society."