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Posted on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 : 11:33 a.m.

$1 billion: University of Michigan's research funding tops the magic number for the first time

By Paula Gardner

The University of Michigan reached the $1 billion milestone for research spending during the 2008-2009 year, according to a release just distributed by the school.

Total research spending was $1.02 billion, with 64.4 percent of that coming from the federal government - representing growth of 7.1 percent from the previous year.

"It's an enormous milestone, and the fact that it's happening in the midst of this recession is all the more important," said U-M Vice President for Research Stephen Forrest in a press release.

According to the release: "Over the last five years, the university has launched 49 startups. More than 70 percent of those new businesses are located in Michigan. In Fiscal Year 2009, which ended June 30, U-M researchers disclosed 350 new discoveries, said Ken Nisbet, director of the U-M Office of Technology Transfer."

U-M researchers have been awarded about $90 million to date in federal stimulus awards. The National Institute of Health spending at U-M rose 7.2 percent last year to $421.5 million - representing over 40 percent of U-M research spending.

According to U-M, among federal agencies:

• National Science Foundation spending rose 3.8 percent to $67.3 million.

• Department of Defense funding increased 8.4 percent to $64.4 million.

• Department of Energy funding grew 24.4 percent to $21.7 million.

U-M also says that federal dollars earmarked for research appears to be slowing, which will be felt in coming years.

The university expects the additional capacity at the North Campus Research Complex - formerly the Pfizer campus in Ann Arbor - to "maintain vigorous growth," according to the release.



Tue, Sep 15, 2009 : 9:22 p.m.

I don't want to rain on your parade but a substantial amount of tax money is used to fund all the new research in the new pfizer building. Pfizer used profits, not tax moneys. the buildings are now off the tax rolls because UM does not pay taxes.


Tue, Sep 15, 2009 : 12:29 p.m.

Let's try to preempt the haters - research - particularly the kind of research they are talking about for the former Pfizer site - will drive the economic future of this state.