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Useful Stats: Science and engineering R&D at colleges and universities, by state and metro area

September 06, 2018
By: Jonathan Dworin

Federal funding for S&E R&D grew by $7.2 billion from 2002 to 2016, reaching more than $31.6 billion. This represents a 29.4 percent increase during the period, or approximately 2.0 percent per year, according to an SSTI analysis of data from the National Science Foundation’s National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics. Among states, California ($4.3 billion), New York ($2.4 billion), and Maryland ($2.3 billion) received the most in federal funds for S&E R&D in 2016, while Baltimore ($2.0 billion), New York City ($1.7 billion), and Boston ($1.3 billion) led among metropolitan areas.

S&E R&D accounts for roughly 98.5 percent of all federal funds for R&D, and roughly 93.2 percent of all R&D at colleges and universities. The fields where the federal government invests the most at colleges and universities are the life sciences (comprised of agricultural, health, biological and biomedical sciences).

 

 

 

Federal funding for S&E R&D grew by $7.2 billion from 2002 to 2016, reaching more than $31.6 billion. This represents a 29.4 percent increase during the period, or approximately 2.0 percent per year. As can be seen in the chart below, a considerable portion of this increase came during FY 2009 and FY 2010 as part of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009 (ARRA).

 

 

 

The map below charts the metropolitan areas that received more than $1.0 million in federal obligations for S&E R&D at colleges and universities in 2016. The map is based on the 395 universities with a physical location and data available for the entire period from 2008-2016, which shows a university’s funding before, during, and for five-years after ARRA. Schools and university systems that do not designate a location, schools with incomplete data over the period, and schools with less than $1.0 million in S&E R&D funding are excluded from this map.

 

 

 

The metropolitan areas with the highest levels of federal funding for S&E R&D at colleges and universities in 2016 were Baltimore ($2.0 billion), New York City ($1.7 billion), and Boston ($1.3 billion). Baltimore (25.7 percent of new funds), New York City (6.3 percent of new funds), and Durham (4.2 percent of new funds) captured the largest share of new funds for S&E R&D from 2008 to 2016. Baltimore’s numbers are driven largely by the Applied Physics Laboratory, which operates more like a federal lab than a traditional university research center. After starting the period with low levels of federal support for S&E activities, the Bakersfield, California, Juneau, Alaska, and Murray, Kentucky, metropolitan areas experienced the largest increases from 2008 to 2016.

At the state level, California ($4.3 billion), New York ($2.4 billion), and Maryland ($2.3 billion) received the most in federal funds for S&E R&D in 2016. These three states also captured the largest share of new funds for S&E R&D during the 2008 to 2016 period. Maryland (47.6 percent increase), Michigan (27.7 percent increase), and Utah (19.9 percent increase) experienced the largest growth in S&E R&D during this period. Washington, D.C. (79 percent increase), Guam (67.7 percent increase), and American Samoa (67.2 percent increase) saw the largest growth among territories.

SSTI has made S&E R&D by state data available in the excel spreadsheet below. Metro-level data is available for SSTI members.

useful stats, higher edFile Useful Stats 090618 STATE.xlsx