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UNC’s total research receipts jump 10 percent during fiscal 2003

CHAPEL HILL -- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s sponsored research funding jumped 10 percent in fiscal 2003 to $537.4 million – up from $488.3 million in 2002.

The new totals, finalized recently by the university’s Office of Sponsored Research, showed increases in all categories of research grants awarded to faculty from the federal government, other government agencies and private sources.

"These latest research funding results are a tribute to the success of our faculty as well as the investment the taxpayers of North Carolina make in the university," said Chancellor James Moeser. "Carolina’s success in faculty research contributes directly to our ongoing efforts to help transform the state’s economy."

Dr. Tony Waldrop, vice chancellor for research and economic development, said sponsored faculty research makes possible the discoveries and innovations that created 23 UNC spin-off companies now employing state residents in the Triangle, Triad and in eastern North Carolina.

Federally funded research accounted for the biggest gains in the university’s 2003 total. That funding rose to $397 million from $356.3 million – up 10.3 percent from 2002. Among the federal agencies included in this category are the departments of defense, health and human services, and education; the National Science Foundation; and the U.S. Agency for International Development.

The largest agency funding total came from the Department of Health and Human Services, at $308.2 million, a figure representing a 13.3 percent increase from fiscal 2002. (The National Institutes of Health is an agency of the Department of Health and Human Services.)

The largest percentage increase in an agency’s funding came from the National Endowment for the Humanities, at 205 percent (from $80,000 to $244,035).

The other government category, which includes N.C. state and local governments as well as out-of-state governments, totaled $41.2 million, up slightly more than 1 percent from 2002. In addition, privately funded research increased 8.7 percent, from $91.2 million to $99.2 million. The organizations represented in this category include foundations, industry and non-profits.

For fiscal 2003, the university submitted 3,585 proposals and managed about 7,595 active contract and grant awards.

"On average, each faculty member at Carolina brought in $187,383 in outside funding last year," Waldrop said. "In today’s economy, that’s an impressive number, and it signifies the overall excellence of our academic work."

The three colleges or schools receiving the highest levels of total awarded funding for fiscal 2003 were the School of Medicine ($289.5 million, a 13.1 percent increase), the School of Public Health ($58.2 million, a 13.6 percent increase) and the College of Arts and Sciences ($51.5 million, a 9.5 percent increase).

The biggest positive percentage changes were seen in the School of Law (367 percent, an increase from $15,000 to $70,000), the School of Government (306.2 percent, an increase from $34,210 to $138,975) and the School of Nursing (54.6 percent, an increase from $6.8 million to $10.5 million).

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