Back to The Future of Science and Technology in the States
Center for Science, Technology, and Congress
American Association for the Advancement of Science
The AAAS Board of Directors, in accordance with Association policy, has approved publication of this report as a contribution to the understanding of an important process. The interpretations and conclusions are those of the authors and do not purport to represent the views of the Board or the Council of the Association.
This project is funded by a grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York. The Corporation does not take responsibility for any statements or views expressed in this report.
Printed in the United States of America
Copyright © 1996 by the
American Association for the Advancement of Science
After nearly 50 years of steadily increasing budgets, the U.S. research community is facing the prospect of significantly reduced federal funding. Efforts to balance the budget and reduce the size of the federal government have created great uncertainty about the future of federal funding for science and technology. Although science and technology funding fared relatively well in FY 1996, projections indicate it will decrease significantly as discretionary spending falls over the next several years. At the same time, the congressional agenda is increasingly dominated by issues involving science and technology.
In January 1996, the American Association for the Advancement of Science's Center for Science, Technology, and Congress, undertook to produce a series of reports to provide information on the state and regional impacts of federal R&D spending. AAAS also began planning a series of meetings tied to these reports. Our goal is to help the research community, both industrial and academic, state and federal lawmakers, and local opinion leaders better understand the effects of current trends in public and private sector R&D spending in key regions of the U.S. At the same time, we want to provide oft-requested information to Congress and the public about the role of science and technology, including federal, state, and industrial R&D, in the economies of various states. Following advice from a number of sources, we chose Georgia as the subject of our first report.
In gathering information for The Future of Science and Technology in Georgia: Trends and Indicators, we used the most recent data available from the National Science Foundation. Because of the complexity of collecting information on a state-by-state basis, especially with regard to industry spending, the most recent NSF data is from 1993. We have augmented this information with additional research and with projections of future government spending based on outyear funding data from the President's budget request and the congressional budget resolution. The report provides basic demographic information on Georgia's R&D activity; examines the distribution of federal R&D funding in the state; discuss any major state R&D initiatives and government-industry-university partnerships; and assesses the potential future impacts of trends in federal, state, and private sector R&D spending.
A local planning group helped identify issues and speakers of interest in the state of Georgia, and we would like to thank the members of this group for their input and enthusiasm: Claudia Adkison, Emory University School of Medicine; Barry Goldstein, Medical College of Georgia; Kofi Bota, Clark Atlanta University; Andrew Harris, Georgia Institute of Technology; Aqeel Fatmi, Solvay Pharmaceuticals; Thomas Landrum, University of Georgia; Steve Moye, Emory University; Dave Roessner, Georgia Institute of Technology; Charlie Stokes, National Foundation for CDC; and Amy Todd and Bill Todd, Georgia Research Alliance. We also appreciate the help received from several people in Washington, DC, most notably Patty Bartlett of Georgia Institute of Technology and Gail Harrison and Mary Maselli of the Science Coalition. Finally, we should thank Kei Koizumi for his efforts in collecting and analyzing the data and Robert Rich for his work in drafting the report.
|Albert H. Teich
AAAS Science and
Bonnie Bisol Cassidy|
AAAS Center for Science,
Technology, and Congress
Situated in the heart of the southeastern United States, Georgia is potentially a major center for research and development. Throughout the 1996 Summer Olympics, the resultant boon to the economy and beyond, community leaders will be looking to further raise the state's profile as well as the standard of living through expanded R&D. In many ways, research offers an excellent opportunity to boost economic growth, employment, and the prosperity of Georgia's citizens.
In 1993 (the most recent year for which reliable R&D data are available), Georgia ranked eleventh in the United States in population (7.0 million) and twelfth in gross state product, at $153 billion, with a breakdown by economic sector similar to the rest of the United States. There were approximately 3.6 million people in Georgia's civilian labor force, also ranking eleventh in the nation. Personal income per capita, however, was only $20,251, below the national average of $21,809.
Prior to the advent of the F-22 contract, Georgia's research and development spending lagged the rest of the economy. Total R&D performed in Georgia was $1.6 billion, ranking 25th out of the 50 states. Included in this figure is R&D carried out at universities, in industry, and in government labs. This represented one percent of the state's economy, compared to about 2.8 percent for the nation as a whole.
Of the $1.6 billion spent on R&D in Georgia in FY 1993 (see Chart 1), industry provided 54 percent, the federal government 32 percent, and universities and colleges 11 percent. The share of Georgia's R&D provided by academic institutions with their own funds (including state appropriations) is considerably greater than the national average, which is only 2 percent. In addition to funding R&D at public universities, Georgia's state and local governments also provided more than twice the national average of one percent of total R&D expenditures. However, the F-22 contract (discussed below) will change Georgia's proportions significantly.
In 1993--statistics which do not reflect the full impact of the F-22 contractprivate industry carried out more than half (54 percent) of Georgia's R&D, while universities performed 35 percent (see Table 1 and Chart 2). This ratio is in marked contrast to the rest of the country where industry carried out 71 percent relative to universities' 12 percent. Federal government labs, both in Georgia and elsewhere, conducted an additional 10 percent of the R&D. Like most other R&D statistics in the state, these numbers will change as data for more recent years become available.
Georgia R&D Profile:
Comparisons with U.S. and Other States
|Georgia||U.S.||GA as %
|Population 1994 (000)||7,055||260,341||2.7%||11|
|Per Capita Income '94||$20,251||$21,809||92.9%||31|
|Total R&D 1993 (mil)*||$1,577||$165,849||1.0%||25|
|Industry R&D '93 (mil)*||$860||$118,334||0.7%||24|
|Univ. R&D '93 (mil)*||$547||$19,911||2.7%||11|
|Federal R&D '93 (mil)*||$506||$62,374||0.8%||--|
|Per Capita Federal
|Gross State Product
|Doctoral Scientists, 93||7,950||430,332||1.8%||17|
|Doctoral Engineers, 93||917||81,293||1.1%||27|
Source: Reproduced from National Science Foundation, Science and Engineering
Profile: Georgia, prepared by Division of Science Resources Studies,
Data compiled from numerous sources.
Some figures may disagree with other tables because of differing survey methods and definitions. *-See note for Table 1
The following sections examine the impact of federal funding for R&D in Georgia by performer.
Apart from the R&D work they carried out with federal funds, Georgia's industrial firms also spent about half a billion dollars of their own funds on R&D in 1993. (See Table 1.) Industry also supported $52 million of academic research. While the data do not indicate the share of these funds that was spent in Georgia institutions, it is likely that the share was substantial, making the proprotion of academic R&D funded by industry in Georgia much higher than the national average.
By far the most notable portion of federally funded industrial R&D in Georgia is the Air Force's F-22 Fighter Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) program. The F-22 is the Air Force's highest priority procurement program and involves development of the latest generation air superiority fighter. This single item accounted for about $2 billion of federal obligations in FY 1993, in effect tripling the size of federal R&D funding in Georgia to $3 billion.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautical Systems in Marietta, Georgia, is the prime contractor for the F-22 EMD program. Along with Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems in Fort Worth, Texas, and Boeing Defense and Space Group's Military Airplanes Division in Seattle, Washington, the Marietta facility is responsible for about one third of the program. F-22 development work began in 1991 and is expected to proceed to production and procurement spending by 2002. Total EMD spending will amount to $12.3 billion.
Federal R&D obligations to Georgia universities and colleges amounted to $211 million in FY 1993, 1.9 percent of all federal R&D funds going to academia (see Table 3). (Note: These figures are based on data reported by the institutions themselves. Because of differences in data collection techniques, the data reported by the federal agencies, contained in Table 2, are slightly different.) All of the major R&D funding agencies in Washington fund academic research in Georgia. Biomedical research funded by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), made up the largest single share at $94 million. Defense funding to universities, complementing the DOD-funded industrial research discussed above, was worth $47 million.
More than 80 percent of federal R&D support to universities in Georgia goes to three institutions. (See Table 3 and Chart 5.) Emory University receives about a third while the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech each receive about one fourth of the total. Other universities receiving federal funds include Clark Atlanta University and the Medical College of Georgia which pull in about 4 percent each.
Emory University, located in Atlanta, ranked 52nd in federal R&D support among universities and colleges nationwide and received $64.9 million in FY 93 (see Table 3). Federally funded research there is focused mainly in the biomedical area, with over 95 percent sponsored by HHS. The university is a part of the so-called "Clifton Corridor," a concentration of research organizations which also includes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the headquarters of the American Cancer Society. In biomedical research, Emory competes among the top research universities in the country.
The University of Georgia, located in Athens, has a broad federal research portfolio. The university's $53.9 million FY 93 federal R&D budget was spread relatively evenly among HHS, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Department of Energy (DOE). The University ranks 64th in federal funding of research universities nationwide.
The Georgia Institute of Technology, or Georgia Tech, has yet another funding pattern in its $50.8 million federally supported R&D portfolio in 1993. Seventy percent came from the Defense Department, 13 percent from NASA and 7 percent from the Environmental Protection Agency. In contrast to Emory University, only 5 percent of Georgia Tech's federal R&D funding came from HHS.
The diverse nature of federal R&D funds going to Georgia universities suggests that much of the Washington science policy debate has implications for local researchers and research administrators. For example, recent threats to defense spending, and consequently defense R&D, could affect both the state's industry and Georgia Tech. Likewise, congressional action earlier this year to increase NIH funding augers well for Emory, which depends on continuing external support for its biomedical research program.
Research carried out in the federal government's own laboratories accounted for five percent of federally funded R&D in Georgia in FY 93. These R&D activities (for which $160 million was obligated in FY 1993) were concentrated mainly in two agencies: HHS with $85 million and USDA with $37 million.
The HHS portion is devoted largely to work at CDC headquarters, located in Atlanta. There are approximately 4,600 CDC employees in the Atlanta area, with a large portion engaged in research. This facility leads the nation's effort to promote health and quality of life by preventing and controlling disease, injury, and disability. There is great potential for industrial spin-offs from the CDC and the Centers figure prominently in regional development plans.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's R&D labs in Georgia include the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Russell Research Center in Athens and ARS Field Laboratories in Athens, Byron, Dawson, Griffin, Tifton and Watkinsville. These labs focus on a wide range of agricultural topics, from poultry diseases to piedmont conservation to peanut research. The U.S. Forest Service also maintains labs in Athens, Dry Branch and Macon.
Other, smaller federal research facilities in Georgia are supported by DOD, NASA, the Department of the Interior, EPA, the Commerce Department, and the Department of Transportation.
Other nonprofit institutions in Georgia contribute only a modest amount to the state's research effort. Less than one percent of R&D is conducted by nonprofit institutions in Georgia, compared with about three percent nationwide. R&D funding by nonprofit institutions for work carried out in Georgia is also less than one percent of the total.
In 1990, a partnership of research universities, businesses, and state government officials founded the Georgia Research Alliance. Its mission is to foster economic development within Georgia by developing and leveraging the research capabilities of the research universities to assist in developing scientific and technology-based industry, commerce and business. The plan is to build, in the vicinity of Georgia universities, concentrations of high technology business such as those in Silicon Valley in California and along Route 128 in Boston. This group has invested $113 million in academic R&D to date.
Federal R&D funding will also play a vital role in Georgia's future economic development. While the diversity of Georgia's research enterprise springs from an equally diverse set of funding sources, the federal share will be increasingly important. From 1975 until 1991 (see Charts 6 and 7), federal R&D in Georgia grew by an average of about 15 percent per year in constant dollars. Since 1991, mostly as a result of the F-22 contract, this support has skyrocketed to over 4 percent of all federal R&D. In fact, in FY 1993 Georgia became the fifth largest recipient of federal R&D obligations in the nation.
Future hopes for explosive increases like that of the last few years, or even the steady growth of the last twenty years, remain dependent on federal policy, much of which is currently being enacted. Even though the latest complete data available are for obligations for fiscal year 1993, we can project future trends in Georgia's share of federal R&D based on national trends. Defense R&D, which, as noted earlier, now accounts for 89 percent of Georgia's federal R&D, has declined each year of the 1990s in real terms. By FY 1995 it had fallen to 30 percent below its peak of the late 1980s.
In FY 1996, however, Congress appropriated 1.5 percent more for defense R&D than in FY 1995. Although it is unclear how the FY 1996 R&D funds will be distributed, industry is especially likely to benefit as this money is obligated over the coming year. This is because the development, testing and evaluation parts of the R&D budget enjoyed the bulk of the increase. Basic and applied research, however, were cut, meaning that Georgia universities and colleges receiving DOD funds, especially Georgia Tech, are likely to see less in future years, even before the effects of inflation are taken into account.
Clouding the long-term prospects for defense R&D is the continuing struggle between Congress and the President over defense spending in general. Congress has protected defense spending from cuts even in the push to achieve a balanced budget and was responsible for the real increases both to DOD's R&D and the overall defense budget. The President, however, has placed a greater emphasis on domestic programs and has called for steady or declining defense spending over the next several years.
In an era of declining defense budgets, choices must be made between cutting procurement, manpower or R&D. The President's latest budget plan for FY 1997, released in March 1996, calls for the RDT&E account (which includes about 98 percent of DOD's R&D) to fall from $36.3 billion in FY 1995 to $28.5 billion in FY 2002. After factoring in expected inflation, this amounts to a 33 percent drop between FY 1995 and FY 2002. (For more detailed information on the President's FY 1997 budget request and outyear projections, see AAAS Report XXI: Research & Development FY 1997.) Competition for defense R&D funds in the future will likely become more intense.
In the President's plan, nondefense R&D would increase by 5.2 percent, well above the projected inflation rate, to $34.4 billion between FY 1996 and 1997. This spending, however, could be restricted during congressional debate in competition with social programs, entitlements, and the other diverse accounts funded by the federal government. The previous fiscal year presents an example of differing R&D priorities between Congress and the White House. The FY 1996 congressional budget resolution, passed by Congress as a plan to balance the budget by FY 2002, laid out a set of assumptions which could lead to a real one third cut to nondefense R&D by FY 2002, according to a AAAS analysis.
Projecting to 2002, AAAS's analysis of the President's latest seven-year balanced budget plan sees a 24.5 percent decline in nondefense R&D after adjusting for expected inflation between FY 1995 and 2002. Analysis of the detailed outyear projections in the budget shows that, after a real increase for nondefense R&D in FY 1997 (up 2.9 percent after inflation), nondefense R&D would decline steeply in fiscal years 1998 (down 5.2 percent after inflation), 1999 (down 5.7 percent), and 2000 (down 4.9 percent) and would continue downward in 2001 and 2002.
Federally-funded R&D in Georgia could be severely impacted by such overall cuts to nondefense research. In the upcoming debate over the 1997 budget and plans to balance the budget by 2002, the future of federal research support remains unclear.
Unless otherwise indicated, all dollar figures in this report refer to research and development (R&D), which includes both the conduct of R&D and support for R&D facilities. Some figures refer only to conduct of R&D and are noted as such.
This report uses the National Science Foundation's definitions for R&D. These definitions, which are used by NSF and the Office of Management and Budget in the collection of federal government statistics for R&D, are reproduced below.
R&D refers to researchboth basic and appliedand development activities in the sciences and engineering as well as R&D plant.
Research is systematic study directed toward fuller scientific understanding of the subject studied. Research is classified as either basic or applied according to the objective of the sponsoring agency.
In basic research the objective of the sponsoring agency is to gain fuller knowledge or understanding of the fundamental aspects of phenomena and of observable facts without specific applications toward processes or products in mind.
In applied research the objective of the sponsoring agency is to gain knowledge or understanding necessary for determining means by which a recognized and specific need may be met.
Development is the systematic use of the knowledge or understanding gained from research directed toward the production of useful materials, devices, systems or methods, including design, development, and improvement of prototypes and new processes. It excludes quality control, routing product testing and evaluation.
Funds for conducting R&D include those for personnel, program supervision, and administrative support directly associated with R&D activities. Expendable or movable equipment needed to conduct R&D, e.g., a microscopes or a spectrometer, is also included.
The definitions discussed above constitute "conduct of R&D." R&D plant, or R&D facilities support, include funds for non-movable R&D facilities such as reactors, wind tunnels, or particle accelerators, or for the construction, repair, or alteration of such facilities. (A facility is interpreted broadly to be any physical resource important to the conduct of R&D.)
Figures may vary between tables. Some tables are based on calendar years while others are based on fiscal years; some cover only conduct of R&D while others cover R&D facilities support as well. Data are collected using a variety of surveys which yield data that are not always perfectly consistent. Some data are collecting by surveying the sources of R&D funds (such as federal agencies) while others data are based on a survey of recipients. Please refer to the original source for complete information on how the data are collected.
(Definitions adapted from National Science Foundation, Federal R&D Funding by Budget Function Fiscal Years 1994-96, NSF 95-342, 1995, and other NSF publications)