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Useful Stats: Higher Education R&D Expenditures by State, 2009-2018

November 21, 2019
By: Colin Edwards

Expenditures in higher education R&D (HERD) grew in FY 2018, increasing by $4.1 billion over FY 2017, the largest year-over-year increase since FY 2010-2011 according to an SSTI analysis of recently released data from the National Science Foundation’s National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics. For the 10-year period from FY 2009 to FY 2018, HERD grew by 38.4 percent nationally, representing an increase of nearly $22 billion. Higher education R&D expenditures grew the fastest over this 10-year period in the District of Columbia (78.2 percent), Connecticut (65.5 percent), Washington (59.5 percent), and Utah (59.3 percent). The largest absolute gains over the same period were seen in California ($2.5 billion increase), New York ($2.3 billion), and Pennsylvania ($1.6 billion). The map below shows the one-, five- and 10-year percentage changes in each state’s higher education R&D expenditures.



Maine (18.1 percent decrease), New Mexico (17.6 percent decrease), Puerto Rico (9.2 percent decrease), Alaska (4.7 percent decrease), and Hawaii (4.1 percent decrease) all had greater HERD expenditures in 2009 than in 2018.

California remained the national leader in higher education R&D expenditures, with more than $10.1 billion spent in FY 2018, or roughly 12.8 percent of the national total. California’s share of all HERD expenditures increased over the 2017 level of 12.2 percent and represents the state’s greatest share since it captured 13.3 percent in 2009. New York (8.3 percent) ranked second and Texas (7.2 percent) ranked third in shares of total higher education R&D expenditures during FY 2018.

The map below shows the annual changes in higher education R&D expenditures by state in FY 2009-2018. SSTI has also prepared a table with additional analysis, based on NSF HERD data tables, which can be downloaded here in Excel format. SSTI will be taking a deeper dive into exploring the data in the coming weeks, so make sure to check back with the Digest for future stories.



useful stats, r&dFile NSF_HERD by State (2009-2018)_SSTI analysis.xlsx