KU News Release

March 28, 2011
Contact: Jack Martin, University Communications, 785-864-7100

Externally funded research at KU rises once again, funding new discoveries

LAWRENCE — Research activity at the University of Kansas continued to grow during 2010, leading to valuable discoveries in human health, education, energy and many other fields of study.

Research expenditures at all KU campuses grew to $224.6 million last year, an 8.4 percent increase over 2009. That figure included all externally funded research from federal, state, industry and foundation sources. It is a record amount for KU and the third consecutive annual increase.

“Discovery and innovation happen everywhere at KU — in the lab, the library, the field and the classroom,” said Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little. “The primary goal is to benefit society, but there’s an undeniable economic benefit to Kansas when our faculty compete for and receive grants. Their work creates jobs and boosts local businesses. I’m proud of what they continue to accomplish and the impact it has.”

Approximately 83 percent of KU’s externally funded research came into Kansas from the federal government in 2010, including awards under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. During the two years of that program, KU researchers have so far received 152 awards totaling $70.6 million. 2010 would have been a record year for KU research expenditures even without the one-time contribution from ARRA grants.

“Exciting things are happening at KU,” said Steve Warren, vice chancellor for research and graduate studies. “Faculty members are engaged in research as never before in a wide range of studies: science and engineering, education, the social sciences, and the arts and humanities. We’re encouraging and recognizing this scholarly activity, and doing everything possible to provide faculty with the tools they need to be successful.”

Last year, an annual National Science Foundation survey ranked KU 44th among national public research universities in terms of federal science and engineering research expenditures during 2009. The NSF rankings for 2010 will be released in the fall.

“Given the importance of federal research funding, we’re concerned about the budget situation in Washington and the affect cuts to research programs might have on this national investment,” said Paul Terranova, vice chancellor for research at the KU Medical Center. “ARRA was a welcome one-time stimulus. Research is a long-term commitment. It’s important that the federal government continue to be a partner with us. As a university, and as a nation, we cannot rest if we want to remain competitive in the world of research.”

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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