An update to this report was released on July 20, 2000. (PDF,
(10 accompanying presentation slides are also available.)
The Future of Science and Technology in New England: Trends and Indicators
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 policy consideration. 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.
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Tables and Charts
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 1997, outyear projections by both the President and Congress 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, and polls continue to show strong support for R&D among the American people.
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 and to organize a series of meetings associated with these reports. This report on science and technology in New England is the sixth in the series.
The goal of this project 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 R&D spending in key regions of the U.S. We also want to provide practical 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.
In gathering information for The Future of Science and Technology in New England: 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 details obligations from fiscal year 1994 and expenditures during the 1993 calendar year. The numbers may change as data for more recent years become available. We have augmented the NSF data with additional research and with projections of future government spending based on outyear funding data from the President's FY 1997 budget request and the FY 1997 congressional budget resolution. The report provides a statistical portrait of New England's R&D activity as a region and an overview of R&D in each New England state; examines the distribution of federal R&D funding in the states; discusses university-based research, federal laboratories and FFRDCs; and assesses the potential future impacts of trends in R&D spending.
We would like to thank the Carnegie Corporation of New York for supporting the AAAS Center for Science, Technology, and Congress and Kei Koizumi for his efforts in assembling and analyzing the data, and for his assistance in drafting the report. We would also like to thank Bonnie Bisol Cassidy for her work in reviewing and editing early drafts of the report.
|Albert H. Teich
AAAS Science and Policy
|Matthew L. Zimmerman
AAAS Center for Science,
Technology, and Congress
The six New England states play a key role in the U.S. R&D enterprise. The region received $4.8 billion in federal R&D funds in FY 1994, 7 percent of the national total. Private industry and universities received the most federal R&D funds, at $1.9 billion and $1.3 billion respectively.
The New England states represent a microcosm of the U.S. in their performance of R&D. Connecticut has the fifteenth ranked research university, nationally, as well as industrial firms and federal labs. Massachusetts receives 68 percent of federal R&D funding to the region. It is home to many major defense contractors, as well as seven of the top 100 U.S. research universities. New Hampshire has a well balanced set of industrial firms, federal labs, and universities. Rhode Island is home to a major naval research center. Maine and Vermont are both involved in the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (ESCoR).
New England universities are major contributors to the U.S. R&D enterprise. They receive 10 percent of all federal R&D support to universities, including over 16 percent of DOE's university support. MIT is ranked third among university recipients of federal R&D funds, and 12 are in the top 100.
The Department of Defense (DOD) is the largest federal supporter of R&D in New England, providing $2.8 billion in FY 1994, over 60 percent of which went to Massachusetts.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the second largest sponsor of R&D in New England, at $1.2 billion in FY 1994. Over half of this support ($623 million) flowed to universities and teaching hospitals, making HHS the largest federal supporter of university R&D in New England.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is the second largest supporter of R&D in New England universities, obligating $206 million in FY 1994.
New England is home to two federally funded research and development centers (FFRDCs), both in Massachusetts, which together received $278 million in R&D obligations from the Department of Defense in FY 1994. MIT's Lincoln Laboratory received $136 million. The Mitre C3I Federal Contract Research Center, which has locations in Virginia and Massachusetts, received a total of $184 million, most of which went to the Massachusetts operation.
Congressional and Administration budget plans call for nondefense R&D to decline by nearly 25 percent in real terms by FY 2002. The President's FY 1997 budget plan called for defense R&D to decline by up to a third in real terms over the next six years. New England, with its strong ties to the defense industry, could be significantly affected by such a decrease. However, HHS support appears to be growing, a promising sign for the region.
Research and development is an important part of the New England regional economy. Although New England represents only 5 percent of the U.S. population, it accounts for over 8 percent of U.S. R&D (See Table 1). R&D is especially important to the state of Massachusetts. Massachusetts alone accounted for almost 70 percent of New England's federal R&D funds in FY 1994, and 4.8 percent of all federal R&D funding.
Private industrial firms fund a large portion of R&D in New England. Of the $13.7 billion in R&D performed in New England in 1993, the most recent year for which industrial R&D data are available, $10.1 billion was performed by industry. New England is home to a number of companies with strong R&D investments, such as Raytheon and General Dynamics. Over 8 percent of the nation's industry-funded R&D is performed in New England. Specific aspects of the region's industrial R&D are discussed in more detail in the individual state overviews following the tables and charts in this report.
In FY 1994, the federal government obligated $4.8 billion in funds for R&D to New England, 7 percent of the national total. Of this amount, the largest share ($1.9 billion) went to the region's industrial firms, followed by universities ($1.3 billion), and government labs ($665 million) (see Table 2).
Since 1988, New England's share of federal R&D funds has remained fairly steady at approximately 7 percent (see Chart 7), well in excess of its 5.1 percent share of the U.S. population. Federal support for university R&D in New England amounted to 10.6 percent of the national total in FY 1994. New England industrial firms received 6.2 percent of total federal support for industrial R&D. The two Massachusetts federally funded research and development centers (FFRDCs), government-owned laboratories operated under contract by non-government institutions, account for 4.6 percent of total federal spending on FFRDCs. Government labs in the region received 4.2 percent of total federal support for government labs. New England also received 21.2 percent of total federal R&D funding to other sources, including independent research hospitals and non-profit organizations.
Chart 6 shows that in real terms (after adjusting for inflation), federal R&D funding to New England generally increased from the mid-1970s until FY 1987, paralleling growth in total federal R&D spending during that period. In FY 1988, Department of Defense (DOD) R&D funding to New England, particularly Massachusetts, dropped sharply and federal R&D funding has remained relatively constant since then.
As Table 3 shows, Massachusetts and Connecticut account for the majority of federal R&D funds to New England. Massachusetts receives the most federal R&D funds among the six states, with a $3.3 billion dollar inflow to the state economy in FY 1994, placing it sixth in the nation, followed by Connecticut (22nd) with $737 million. Vermont received the least among the six states, $49 million in FY 1994.
Universities and Colleges
New England's universities received $1.2 billion in R&D funds from the federal government in FY 1994 (see Table 4). Over half of the federal funds for university R&D came from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), home of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). NIH provides nearly half of federal funding for university research nationwide, and that is true for New England as well. In FY 1994, HHS sponsored $623 million in R&D in New England universities, over three times the level of the next-largest sponsor, the National Science Foundation (NSF), with $206 million. Other important sponsors are the Department of Defense (DOD, $138 million), the Department of Energy (DOE, $100 million), and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA, $64 million).
The strength of the region's universities at winning federal research grants can be seen in Table 4 and Chart 5. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Harvard, and Yale all rank among the top twenty recipients of federal R&D funds, and account for 54 percent of New England's federal R&D funds. Dartmouth College (NH), Brown University (RI), and the University of Vermont are each in the top 100 as well. In all, New England is home to 12 of the top 100 U.S. research universities.
Nationwide, the federal government funds over 60 percent of the R&D conducted at universities. New England universities receive an average of 67 percent of their total R&D budgets from the federal government, dwarfing other sources, such as industrial, institutional, state, and local government funds (see Table 5). Continued federal support for R&D is vital to the continued strength of the research capabilities at these universities. Six New England universities receive over 70 percent of their R&D funds from the federal government. Among New England's top 12 research universities, only the University of Connecticut receives less than 50 percent of its R&D funding from federal sources.
Table 5 shows the extent to which universities in New England depend on federal R&D funds. MIT, the third largest university recipient of federal funds for R&D, receives nearly 75 percent of its research support from the federal government. For most major New England research universities, with the notable exception of MIT, NIH alone is responsible for over half the federal contribution, meaning that more than one third of university R&D in New England is funded by NIH. MIT, with its emphasis on technology and engineering and its lack of a medical school, receives an unusually high percentage of its funds from such sources as DOE, DOD, and NASA. At both public and private institutions, the federal government is the primary supporter of research and makes possible not only the bulk of the research done on campus, but also faculty support and research training for graduate students and undergraduates.
State and local government funding for R&D at New England's top research universities is typically under five percent. At the top three universities, which account for about half the federal research funds to the region's universities, state and local R&D funding is less than 1 percent of the institutions' total R&D budgets. In an era when state budgets are increasingly constrained, it seems unlikely that this source will expand significantly. Institutional funds (i.e., funds derived from tuition, endowment, income, and appropriations in public universities) support a significant part of the research conducted on campuses, but public resistance to tuition increases, especially at public universities, will make expanding this revenue source difficult. Finally, industry is unlikely to fill any gaps caused by declines in other funding sources because it starts from such a small base, less than 10 percent of total R&D funding. Despite significant increases over the past decade and a variety of innovative partnership strategies to better link university and industrial research, industrial funding of university R&D is likely to remain a relatively small part of the overall funding picture for universities.
Government laboratories received $665 million in federal R&D funds in FY 1994, with Massachusetts and Rhode Island receiving the bulk of the funding (see Table 2). Over three-quarters of these funds came from the Department of Defense (DOD), which has numerous labs in the region. One of the major laboratories is the Phillips Laboratory Geophysics Directorate, located at Hanscom Air Force Base in Massachusetts. This lab specializes in earth, atmospheric, and space sciences, and strives to apply its research to military aerospace activity. Another major lab, the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC), is located in Newport, Rhode Island. This lab received $232 million in federal R&D funds in FY 1994 for R&D on undersea warfare technology. NUWC specializes in development of sonar, communications, electronic warfare, and weapons technologies for Navy use. The Army Corps of Engineers operates the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) in Hannover, New Hampshire. CRREL received $26 million in R&D funds from DOD to study cold conditions and the problems they create for construction and military activity.
The Department of Transportation (DOT) also has a network of labs in the region. The three Coast Guard labs in Groton, Connecticut received $10 million for R&D in FY 1994. DOT also runs the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, which received $25 million in federal funds in FY 1994.
Federally Funded Research and Development Centers
New England is home to two federally funded research and development centers (FFRDCs), which received a total of $278 million for R&D in FY 1994. FFRDCs are government-owned facilities which, unlike government labs, are operated and managed under contract either by universities, industrial firms, or nonprofit organizations to conduct research for the federal government. There are a total of 39 FFRDCs in the United States.
Lincoln Laboratory, in Lexington, Massachusetts, is operated by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Its research focuses on communications, space surveillance, ballistic missile defense, tactical surveillance systems, air traffic control, and air defense. In FY 1994, Lincoln Lab received $136 million in federal funds, almost all of which came from the Department of Defense. The C3I Federal Contract Research Center, New Bedford Massachusetts division, is the other New England FFRDC. C3I, operated by Mitre, a non-profit corporation, also receives the vast majority of its R&D funding, $142 million, from DOD. Mitre performs technical work on command, control, communications, and intelligence systems.
Independent Nonprofit Institutions
The New England R&D enterprise is unique in the strength of its nonprofit sector. The region is home to several renowned medical research centers. Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston each received over $96 million from HHS alone in FY 1994 (See Special Table in the Massachusetts section of the report). Draper Laboratories, a defense-oriented nonprofit in Cambridge, MA, received $160 million from DOD.
Although Massachusetts receives the vast majority of federal R&D funds to nonprofit institutions, there are important nonprofit research organizations throughout New England. Jackson Laboratory in Maine received $16 million from HHS for genetics research. Rhode Island Hospital received $5 million from HHS. Haskins Laboratories in New Haven, CT, received over $3 million in federal funds in FY 1994 for research, primarily on problems in human communication.
Outlook and Conclusion
Following a sudden drop in defense R&D funding to New England industry in FY 1988, federal R&D support to the region has remained steady at about 7 percent of the national total (See Chart 7). New England's steady share of total R&D is a result of the diversity of the region's R&D institutions and funding sources. This consistency suggests that R&D in New England will continue to track national trends.
Federal support of R&D in New England has helped to build a strong R&D enterprise. Federal R&D funding has been especially important for the region's universities, which are world-class centers of excellence that not only perform research at the frontiers of knowledge but also attract faculty and students from all over the world. Federal funds have also helped to sustain the region's privately funded R&D, through the support of graduate education of scientists and engineers at the region's universities who go on to staff industrial R&D labs or found their own high-tech firms, and also through linkages between federal and private R&D.
The continued strength of the region's R&D institutions as they prepare to enter the 21st century, however, is in doubt. The national funding outlook for R&D is one of uncertainty mixed with pessimism. Growth in federal support for R&D has failed to keep pace with inflation during the 1990s, especially on the defense side where defense R&D now stands at 75 percent of the peak Cold War spending level in FY 1987. Most of the major civilian R&D funding agencies also face shrinking budgets, with further cutbacks all but certain in coming years.
Congress and the President are committed to balancing the federal budget by FY 2002. Both sides have submitted several balanced budget plans since 1995, and although they differ significantly in detailsenough that no compromise plan has emerged even after two years of negotiationsthe plans all share one crucial aspect: they rely heavily on cuts in discretionary spending to achieve a balanced budget. Because all federal R&D is funded through the discretionary portion of the budget, this has profound implications for federal R&D to New England. AAAS analyses of the various budget plans show that they call for inflation-adjusted reductions in nondefense R&D ranging from 18 to 33 percent over the time period 1995 to 2002.
So far, R&D has fared relatively well amid budget cutbacks, and the cutbacks have not been as severe as the congressional and Presidential budget plans had first projected. NIH, the largest sponsor of nondefense R&D, has won increases greater than the rate of inflation throughout the 1990s, because of strong political support for biomedical research. Other major R&D funding agencies, however, are now facing declining budgets. Nondefense R&D funding agencies excluding NIH have seen their R&D budgets decline by 10 percent in inflation-adjusted terms between FY 1994, the most recent year for which detailed
state statistics are available, and FY 1997, the current fiscal year. DOD R&D has also declined slightly in real terms during this period.
Of New England's six largest sponsors of R&D (see Table 3), only NIH's budget has increased in real terms since FY 1994, the latest year for which detailed state data are available. Because New England's R&D has consistently followed national trends, the cutbacks in other non-defense agencies are likely to be reflected at the state level when the agencies have finished distributing their R&D funds.
New England's strength in privately funded R&D may shelter the region's economy somewhat from federal R&D cutbacks, but the region's universities, dependent on the federal government for two-thirds of their research funding, are likely to feel the full impact of any cuts. The region's federal labs and FFRDCs are dependent on federal funds for all of their research.
Whether these cutbacks will continue is uncertain, because the budget projections are not cast in concrete. However, with both Congress and the President committed to balancing the budget by FY 2002 without raising taxes and without (so far) seriously tackling the growth of entitlement programs, substantial reductions in overall discretionary spending seem inescapable. R&D is part of the discretionary component of the federal budget. It has grown in tandem with increases in discretionary spending. It is likely to decline as the discretionary pie shrinks. The consequences for the future of New England's R&D institutions, both government and private, and for the region's economy could be profound.
In FY 1994, Connecticut was ranked 22nd out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia as a recipient of federal R&D funds, receiving $737 million (FY 1994 is the most recent year for which figures are available). The state is an important center for high technology industry, as well as for academic research.
The Department of Defense (DOD) is the largest federal supporter of R&D in Connecticut. In FY 1994, DOD's obligations to the state were $398 million, 54 percent of total federal R&D funds to the state. Most of DOD's funding, 88 percent, went to private industry. DOD also provided $30 million to its federal lab in the state, the Naval Submarine Medical Research Laboratory in Groton. This lab is an Navy research center for medical issues relating to submarines and diving.
Connecticut has a strong tradition of academic research in both its public and private universities. Yale University in New Haven is the leading research university in Connecticut, ranking 15th out of the top 100 U.S. research universities. Like many academic institutions, Yale receives most of its federal R&D funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Recent achievements include development of a new AIDS medication and a Lyme disease vaccine. In FY 1994, Yale received 74.4 percent of its total research funding from the federal government, a relatively large figure compared to the national average of 60 percent. The remaining 25 percent of Yale's R&D funds was supplied by institutional funds, industry, and state and local government, in that order.
The University of Connecticut (UCONN) is the other major research university in the state, ranking 83rd out of the top 100 U.S. research universities. UCONN and its affiliated medical school received $45 million in federal funds in FY 1994, two thirds of which came from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
In 1993, the most recent year for which comprehensive figures on industrial R&D expenditures are available, industry in Connecticut provided $2 billion for R&D. This represents 70 percent of total R&D expenditures in Connecticut for that year (see Table 1). Including federal funds, industry actually performed almost $2.4 billion in R&D in 1993. According to the Connecticut Technology Council, a partnership of technology providers and users in the state, Connecticut ranks seventh nationally in per capita R&D by industry. The Council also maintains that technology-intensive industry accounts for 34 percent of the total jobs in the state.
A strong and diverse collection of businesses make up Connecticut's R&D base. Connecticut's technological strengths are in the areas of aerospace, advanced manufacturing (particularly of subassemblies and components), and computer hardware and software.
General Electric (GE), the state's largest employer, performs a wide range of research, from development of jet engines to advanced materials and electronics. United Technologies has numerous research-oriented operations in the state, such as its research center in Hartford, which focuses on science related to advanced propulsion and helicopters, and the Pratt and Whitney Jet Engines Division in Middletown, which tests and produces jet engines. The General Dynamics Electric Boat Division in Groton designs and constructs nuclear submarines and other marine systems. In addition to the defense-oriented businesses mentioned above, Connecticut is also home to many service-oriented high-technology companies, involved in computer hardware and software, biotechnology, environmental science, and communications technology. Carrier Corporation, a division of United Technologies, develops computer systems and software for the construction industry. GTE Corp. provides voice and data communications services for industry as well as for national defense. Connecticut also has many small software, electronics, and biotechnology companies.
In 1989, the state established Connecticut Innovations, Inc. (CII). CII is funded by the state and by private investments to provide a variety of services to technology-oriented businesses, from helping them secure initial research grants to aiding them in producing and marketing their products. CII is also involved in transferring technology from academic institutions to industry and in educating and training Connecticut's work force.
Table: Connecticut: Federal R&D by Agency and Performer
As a recipient of federal R&D funds, Maine ranks 45th out of the fifty states and the District of Columbia, receiving $83 million in FY 1994, the most recent year for which federal R&D data are available. Because of its relatively small share of the national R&D enterprise, Maine is one of 18 states involved in the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR). This program is designed to improve the R&D competitiveness of a state by encouraging university and industry research. In Maine, EPSCoR is administered by the Maine Science and Technology Foundation a state-sponsored non-profit organization which promotes science and technology in Maine. The state receives EPSCoR funding from the Department of Defense (DOD), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Energy (DOE), and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
DOD provided 37 percent ($31 million) of Maine's total federal R&D funds in FY 1994. Most of DOD's funds went to private industry in the state. Bath Iron Works (BIW), the state's largest private employer, builds destroyers for the Navy. BIW was recently awarded a major contract to build the next generation of amphibious transport ships.
After DOD, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), primarily through the National Institutes of Health, is the second largest supporter of R&D in Maine. The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor received $16 million from HHS in FY 1994. This accounts for over 70 percent of total HHS funding to Maine, and almost 20 percent of total federal R&D funding to the state. The Jackson Laboratory is a non-profit institution whose purpose is to conduct biomedical research, principally on genetics, and to educate and inform the scientific community. The lab offers educational programs for students at all level, sponsors symposiums and conferences to promote knowledge of genetics and health, and also serves as an important source of tools and information for genetics research.
High-tech industry in Maine is characterized by relatively small businesses performing advanced research and development in fields such as biotechnology, electronics, and advanced materials. IDEXX Laboratories Inc. in Westbrook and Immucell Corporation in Portland, two of the state's growing biotechnology firms, specialize in detection of diseases and disorders in animals and humans and disease prevention products, respectively.
The University of Maine is the largest academic recipient of federal R&D funds in the state. In FY 1994, the University of Maine received over $10 million in federal R&D funds. Forty-five percent of this funding came from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). USDA is involved in research in natural resources in the state, as well as research conducted by the U.S. Forest Service. NSF obligated $2.4 million to the university in FY 1994, for geological and geographic research. The University of Maine is part of a consortium of universities which make up the NSF-funded National Center for Geographic Information and Analysis.
Maine's Science and Technology Action Plan, created by the Maine Science and Technology Foundation, stresses the importance of state involvement in creating a climate conducive to science and technology industry growth. The plan targets specific industries, marine sciences, software, precision manufacturing, telecommunications, biotechnology, environ-mental technology, manufacturing, and composites, for greater support from the state. This involves improving access to investment capital, improving the telecommunications and transportation infrastructure, and better educating the workforce.
Table: Maine: Federal R&D by Agency and Performer
Massachusetts is the largest recipient of federal R&D funds in New England and ranked sixth among the 50 states and the District of Columbia in FY 1994. The federal government obligated $3.3 billion in R&D funds to the state in FY 1994, the latest year for which federal R&D funding data are available, over half of which came from the Department of Defense (DOD).
DOD R&D funding to Massachusetts amounted to $1.8 billion in FY 1994. Most of these funds ($1.1 billion) went to private defense contractors. The state's two federally funded research and development centers (FFRDCs), Lincoln Laboratory in Lexington and the Mitre C3I Federal Contract Research Center in New Bedford received a total of $272 million. The Lincoln Laboratory, run by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), focuses on air and space defense technology. Mitre, a non-profit corporation, develops command and control systems for the U.S. military, as well as commercial air traffic control systems.
DOD obligated $236 million to its intramural labs in Massachusetts in FY 1994. The Air Force Phillips Laboratory, headquartered in New Mexico, operates its Geophysics Directorate at Hanscom Air Force Base. The lab conducts aerospace research relating to military and combat situations. The Army Natick Research, Development, and Engineering Lab performs a wide range of research related to combat activity. DOD also provided $160 million to the Draper Laboratory, a non-profit corporation located in Cambridge, for its work in control systems for missiles, spacecraft, and other vehicles.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), primarily through the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is the second largest federal supporter of R&D in Massachusetts, providing a total of $902 million in R&D funding in FY 1994. While a significant portion of this funding, $347 million, went to the state's research universities, Massachusetts' research hospitals and non-profit medical research institutions received over $400 million. Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston each received over $95 million from HHS. The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston received $54 million. Children's Hospital Medical Center in Boston received $38 million. The New England Medical Center and Beth Israel Hospital, also in Boston, received approximately $25 million each.
The National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Department of Energy (DOE), and the Department of Transportation (DOT) are also major federal funders of R&D in Massachusetts. The majority of DOT's R&D funding to the state goes to the John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center in Cambridge. The Volpe Center supports hundreds of projects for DOT and other federal clients. Its research covers transportation systems simulation and analysis, information systems, communication and navigation, and vehicle and terminal systems technology. In FY 1994, DOT obligated $25 million for R&D to the Volpe Center. NSF and DOE support goes primarily to university research, while NASA's R&D funding goes to universities (particularly MIT), labs, and industry.
Massachusetts universities are unusually dependent on federal funding to support their research. The federal government funded 74.4 percent of the R&D performed at MIT in FY 1994, compared to the national average of 60.1 percent. Harvard University was also well above the national average, relying on federal sources for 68.3 percent of its R&D expenditures. Boston University tipped the scale with 80.2 percent of its research funded by the federal government.
Seven Massachusetts universities rank among the top 100 university recipients of federal R&D funds. MIT and Harvard, ranked third and twelfth, respectively, account for most of the state's university R&D. The state ranks fourth as a recipient of federal R&D funding to universities, behind California, New York, and Maryland.
MIT received $272 million in federal R&D funding in FY 1994. At $67 million, DOE was the largest federal agency providing R&D funds to MIT. HHS, primarily through NIH, provided $59 million, and DOD provided $57 million. MIT also received significant R&D funding from NSF and NASA (see Table 4). MIT's traditional emphasis on engineering and physics, as well as the absence of an affiliated medical school, results in a wide distribution of federal funding in a variety of scientific areas. Recent MIT research projects include work on particle physics supported by the Department of Energy, robot and human tactile perception (funded by DOD), advanced materials and computer science research funded by NSF, and astronomy research funded by NASA.
Harvard received $191 million in federal R&D funding in FY 1994. The university, with its affiliated teaching hospitals, is a national leader in biomedical research. Over 75 percent ($146 million) of its federal obligations came from HHS, again primarily through NIH. The National Science Foundation (NSF) was a distant second, with $22 million.
The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute is a major recipient of NSF funds to Massachusetts. The Institute received $40 million from NSF in FY 1994. The remainder of its federal funding came primarily from DOD ($21 million). Woods Hole is an important center for oceanographic studies and serves as a non-profit research institution, and also as an institute of higher education. About 150 students are enrolled in graduate-level studies. Research areas at Woods Hole include ocean physics and engineering, biology, geology, and marine chemistry.
Massachusetts' R&D enterprise relies heavily on industrial funding of R&D. In 1993, the most recent year for which reliable data on industrial R&D are available, companies spent $5.2 billion on R&D and performed almost $7 billion in R&D (see Table 1). Many of the largest and best-known industrial performers of R&D in the state are defense oriented. One of the largest is Raytheon Company, headquartered in Lexington, which conducts R&D in four major areas: electronics, engineering and construction, aviation, and major appliances. The company is one of the top U.S. defense contractors, with total sales of $12 billion in 1995. Massachusetts also has a wide variety of high-tech businesses. The state is home to important developers of computer technology, such as Digital Equipment Corporation, headquartered in Maynard, and Lotus Development Corporation, a subsidiary of IBM, in Cambridge. There are also a large number of biotechnology firms, in addition to telecommunications and electronics companies.
Massachusetts has created several quasi-public agencies to encourage development of science and technology oriented industry. The Massachusetts Technology Development Corporation, established in 1978 as a state-sponsored firm, helps secure investment capital for new high-tech businesses. Since 1988, it has been self-supporting. A separate organization, the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, was established in 1994. The purpose of the Collaborative is to encourage partnerships between industry, universities, and the state to foster innovation and improve technology transfer. It is funded by fees for services and by grants for specific programs.
Table: Massachusetts: Federal R&D by Agency and Performer
In FY 1994, New Hampshire ranked 34th out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia as a recipient of federal R&D funds, receiving $219 million. The Department of Defense (DOD) is by far the largest supplier of federal funds to the state. In FY 1994, DOD obligated $149 million for R&D to New Hampshire, 68% of the state's total federal R&D funds.
DOD operates one federal lab in New Hampshire, the Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) in Hannover, an Army Corps of Engineers laboratory. CRREL received $26 million in R&D funds from DOD in FY 1994. Its mission is to apply atmospheric and oceanographic knowledge of cold regions to military and civilian purposes. CRREL studies problems that occur during military activity in cold regions as well as the construction and engineering problems caused by cold conditions.
Apart from CRREL, almost three-quarters of DOD's R&D money to the state is obligated to private industry. For example, Tyco International Ltd., headquartered in Exeter, develops and manufactures electronic components and fiber-optic products for use by the military and private industry. Tyco also makes fire safety products, disposable medical products, and flow control products such as pipes and valves. Sanders Incorporated, a Lockheed Martin company headquartered in Nashua, develops and manufactures advanced electronics systems for military and commercial applications.
New Hampshire also has a substantial number of nondefense high-tech companies. Cabletron Systems, Inc. develops and produces computer network hardware and software. Digital Equipment Corporation, maker of computer networking and communications products, is also an important employer in the state.
Dartmouth College is the primary academic research institution in New Hampshire. In FY 1994, it ranked 88th out of the top 100 U.S. research universities and colleges as a recipient of federal R&D funds. Dartmouth received $40 million, over half of all federal R&D funds to New Hampshire universities. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the National Institutes of Health, provided 72 percent of the college's federal R&D funds in FY 1994. Dartmouth accounted for $33 million of the $35 million that HHS obligated to New Hampshire in FY 1994. Dartmouth relies on the federal government for over 70 percent of its research expenditures, well above the national average of 60.1 percent.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) obligated $14 million for R&D in New Hampshire in FY 1994. The University of New Hampshire received $8 million (57 percent) of this funding. Most of this funding goes to the Space Sciences Center, in the university's Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space. The Center is a hub for NASA's Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, and conducts theoretical and satellite investigations of high energy astrophysics and solar radiation.
Table: New Hampshire: Federal R&D by Agency and Performer
In FY 1994 Rhode Island ranked 25th out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia as a recipient of federal R&D funds, receiving $434 million. Rhode Island is unique among the New England states in that the federal government provides more funds for R&D than does industry. In 1993, the most recent year for which comprehensive data on industry R&D funding are available, the federal government accounted for 60 percent of the state's total federal R&D expenditures, while industry provided only 34 percent.
Of the federal R&D funders in Rhode Island, the Department of Defense (DOD) is the largest. In FY 1994, DOD's obligations to the state totaled $357 million. Most of this funding ($232 million) went to the Newport division of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC). NUWC received 53 percent of total federal R&D funds to the state. NUWC's research focuses on developing underseas warfare technology, such as submarines, autonomous underwater systems, and other technologies of importance to naval defense. NUWC Newport partners with industry and academia in order to facilitate transfer of its technology to the private sector.
DOD also funds a large portion of the industrial R&D in Rhode Island. Businesses in the state received $114 million from DOD in FY 1994. One major recipient is Textron Incorporated which manufactures helicopters and other aircraft and propulsion systems for military and commercial use. Textron is headquartered in Providence.
Brown University is the state's leading research university, ranking 95th out of the top 100 U.S. research universities and colleges. In FY 1994, Brown received $37 million from the federal government. While most other New England universities get over half their federal funds from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Brown's support from federal agencies is more widely distributed, reflecting the diversity of Brown's research activity. While HHS did obligate more to Brown than any other federal agency in FY 1994 ($15 million), the university also received $11 million from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and $7 million from DOD, primarily for research in the physical sciences.
Like Massachusetts and Connecticut, Rhode Island has several hospitals which receive significant amounts of federal research funds. In FY 1994, the state's hospitals received over $16 million in research funds from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Rhode Island Hospital topped the list, receiving $5.1 million in that year. Five other hospitals received between $1 million and $3 million each from HHS for biomedical research.
Table: Rhode Island: Federal R&D by Agency and Performer
Vermont receives the least federal R&D funding of all the New England states, ranking 49th among the 50 states and the District of Columbia in FY 1994. The federal government obligated $49 million in R&D funds to the state in FY 1994, the most recent year for which data on federal R&D funding are available.
Like Maine, Vermont is one of 18 states involved in the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR). EPSCoR's goal is to improve the R&D competitiveness of the participating states by promoting university research and improving links between university research efforts and private interests. Vermont EPSCoR is involved in a variety of activities aimed at improving R&D competitiveness. This includes helping university researchers secure research grants, encouraging links between university research and private industry, and otherwise supporting the Vermont State Plan for Science and Technology.
The State Plan, developed by the Vermont Technology Council and signed as an executive order by the governor in 1994, provides an outline for fostering research and development in the state. It establishes food science, environmental science, biotechnology, and advanced materials as target areas for improvement. The plan also calls for centers of excellence in the target areas, designed to coordinate and promote research. Three centers have already been established; the remaining one, advanced materials, is in the development stage. Vermont EPSCoR is in full operation, and a Manufacturing Extension Center, funded by the Department of Commerce's Manufacturing Extension Program and called for in the plan, is now serving clients, assisting in the transfer of technology to Vermont manufacturers.
The University of Vermont (UVM) is the state's key research university, and serves as the headquarters of Vermont EPSCoR. In FY 1994, UVM ranked 96th out of the top 100 U.S. recipients of federal R&D funding to universities. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), primarily through the National Institutes of Health (NIH), provided $25 million in R&D funds to the university in FY 1994. Much of this money went to the University of Vermont College of Medicine. The College recently opened new facilities for research into molecular biology and environmental studies.
UVM is an important part of the Vermont R&D enterprise. In addition to being the major academic performer of R&D in the state, the UVM campus is home to several other research labs and agencies, including the Vermont Water Resources and Lake Studies Center, run by the U.S. Geological Survey.
Although the level of federal R&D funding to the state is relatively low, in 1993 (the latest year for which data on industrial funding for R&D are available), industry provided funds for over $280 million in R&D in Vermont. IBM manufactures semiconductors in the state, and employs 6000 people. Ben and Jerry's, one of Vermont's better known companies, provided funds to expand the facilities of the center for excellence in food science at UVM. The state is also home to several small biotechnology and electronics firms.
Table: Vermont: Federal R&D by Agency and Performer
Definitions and Notes
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, routine 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 microscope 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 collected by surveying the sources of R&D funds (such as federal agencies) while other 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)
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