CU-Boulder Sponsored Research Tops $250 Million, Sets New Record

Published: Sept. 22, 2003

The University of Colorado at Boulder received $250,436,110 in sponsored research awards for the 2003 fiscal year, setting a new campus record.

NASA and its affiliates led the way for the federal government with $53,122,463 contributing to CU-Boulder's extensive space research. The National Science Foundation was close behind, awarding the campus $46,274,074. The Department of Health and Human Services awarded CU-Boulder nearly $38 million and the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded the campus just over $32 million.

CU-Boulder was awarded $229 million in sponsored research last fiscal year. The campus first topped the $200 million mark in 1998-1999.

"Although federal science funding has continued to rise, it is remarkable that funding awarded to CU-Boulder rose so significantly given the modest level of support we receive from the state," said CU-Boulder Associate Vice-Chancellor for Research Tony Barker. "CU-Boulder has one of the nation's highest rates of per capita research funding awarded to university faculty and researchers, in large part due to their extraordinary talent and reputations."

CU-Boulder's Graduate School and research institutes pulled in nearly $127 million, led by the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences -- a joint program of CU-Boulder and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration -- with $39,276,732.

Close behind was the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, with $32,697,103.

JILA, a joint program of CU and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, was awarded nearly $19 million, while the Institute for Behavioral Genetics took in more than $10.5 million.

Funding to the College of Arts and Sciences, which received $71.7 million in 2003, was led by the molecular, cellular and developmental biology department with more than $15 million. The chemistry and biochemistry department was second with just over $12 million, followed by the astrophysical and planetary sciences department and its affiliated Center for Astrophysics and Space Astronomy combining to bring in more than $10.7 million.

The College of Engineering and Applied Science was awarded 446 grants totaling roughly $37.5 million, led by aerospace engineering with more than $11 million. The chemical and biological engineering department was awarded nearly $7 million. Computer science was granted 41 awards totaling about $5.8 million, while civil, architectural and environmental engineering received nearly $5.2 million.

The CU-Boulder School of Education garnered roughly $ 5.4 million.

"This record amount of sponsored research is terrific news for the campus and our community, especially in these uncertain economic times," said CU-Boulder Chancellor Richard Byyny. "The talent of our faculty members in attracting research dollars and their scholarly abilities as teachers provide a vast number of opportunities for both graduate and undergraduate students to participate in leading-edge research and education programs."

Although CU-Boulder's space program is considered one of the best in nation, the NSF funding of more than $46 million supports more faculty and students involved in a broad range of research, said Barker.

Miscellaneous foundations and associations accounted for nearly $11 million to the campus, while industry provided nearly $9 million. The State of Colorado awarded CU-Boulder nearly $7.5 million.

The successes of CU-Boulder's interdisciplinary institutes and centers reflect the increasing national funding priorities for complex issues, said CU-Boulder Graduate School Dean Carol Lynch.