As federal funding for research stalls and competition for investment from other sources heats up, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has again grown its revenues.
Growth hit 2.9 percent in fiscal 2007, putting UNC-Chapel Hill above $610 million in total grants and contracts. That’s $17 million more than last year’s record of $593 million, and more than twice as much revenue as just 10 years ago.
“Our growth in sponsored funding reflects the high quality of innovative faculty who are finding solutions to some of the most pressing problems facing us today,” said Chancellor James Moeser.
“Carolina’s faculty are conducting cutting-edge research that advances knowledge and directly benefits the people of North Carolina and beyond,” said Tony Waldrop, vice chancellor for research and economic development.
While competition for funding from the National Institutes of Health has increased sharply, UNC-Chapel Hill’s share of those funds rose 6.6 percent to $314 million, accounting for 51 percent of overall investments. The School of Medicine attracted $298 million in 2007, almost two-thirds from the NIH.
The School of Dentistry received $12,591,809 in total grants and contracts for fiscal year 2007, and $11,762,535 for fiscal year 2006, representing a 7 percent increase in revenue.
“Our faculty members are to be commended for their dedication to discoveries that will advance oral health and also have significant implications for overall health,” said Dean John N. Williams. “Our School’s research community is deeply collaborative and centered on improving human life – reflecting the robust spirit of research throughout our University.”
UNC-Chapel Hill and its Board of Trustees also placed an emphasis on retaining excellent faculty members, which helps leverage research investments and attract other quality research collaborators, Waldrop said.
Each year, UNC-Chapel Hill averages 120 technology transfer agreements, bringing in $2.5 million to $4 million in royalties. UNC-Chapel Hill ranks 10th in the nation in patent strength.
The growth in research comes at an especially important time as UNC-Chapel Hill works with the local community to move forward with Carolina North, a research campus to be located near the University’s main campus. The first component of Carolina North could be the Innovation Center. More than an incubator, the facility would provide space for research start-ups and capital management teams to attract seed capital and accelerate research into the marketplace.
In 2008, Carolina will also open the Nutrition Research Institute at the North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis.