University Research Expenditures Set Record at $175 Million

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – University of Arkansas research expenditures totaled over $175 million in fiscal year 2018, the highest in the university’s history. This total, which includes research expenditures from the University of Arkansas System’s Division of Agriculture, was an 11 percent increase over last year’s total expenditures. Over the past decade, research expenditures have increased by 51.7 percent.

“Research activity at the U of A has grown substantially in the last decade," said Daniel Sui, vice chancellor for research and innovation. "This is a reflection of the dynamic growth of collaborative research being done to improve the lives of Arkansans and build a better world through lifesaving discoveries, innovative technology, creative endeavors and economic development. I look forward to future developments, as our university community builds on this momentum, continuing to implement our strategic plan and strengthen our key research areas."

The amount of funding received by researchers in fiscal year 2018  increased as well. The total of $110.5 million, which included research funding for the Division of Agriculture, represented a 7.2 percent increase over 2017. Over the past decade, research funding has increased by 64 percent.

The funding breakdown was $72.9 million from federal sources, $16.5 million from state sources, $6.6 million from foundations, $4.4 million from industry partners, and $10.1 million from other sources.

Major sources of research funding for fiscal year 2018 include the following:

  • $17.9 million from the National Science Foundation for a wide range of research topics, including wastewater treatment, civil engineering, surface engineering, rice production, power electronics, STEM education and anthropological imaging. This includes a total of eight awards through the Faculty Early Career Development, or CAREER, Program.
  • $12.2 million from the U.S Department of Education for various programs, including grants to support an effort to increase the number of educators prepared to teach English language learners in Arkansas schools.
  • $12 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to support research efforts such as studying the effect of climate change on produce supply chains, investigating water-saving irrigation practices, reducing foodborne pathogens in poultry, improving agroecosystem efficiency and developing molecular tools for spinach breeding.
  • $3.1 million from the National Institutes of Health for research focusing on topics including wound healing, metabolism, drug design and delivery, DNA sequencing and obesity.

About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among only 2 percent of universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.


Camilla Shumaker, director of science and research communications
University Relations


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