UC Santa Barbara Public Affairs and Communications

NEWS RELEASE

UCSB's External Research Funding Reached $159 Million in 2005-06
Annual Total More Than Doubles Over Past Decade


November 15, 2006

(Santa Barbara, Calif.) – At UC Santa Barbara research support from external sources – federal and state agencies, corporations, and foundations – reached $159 million during the 2005-06 fiscal year, an increase of $6 million over the previous year.

Funding in the form of contracts and grants for research, training, and public-service programs is considered the lifeblood of a premier research university. Over the past 10 years, UCSB's annual external research funding has more than doubled.

"This significant growth in research funding is a testament to the excellence and originality of research and creative activity at UC Santa Barbara," said Chancellor Henry T. Yang. "I am proud of the contributions made by our faculty, researchers, staff, and students as together we explore the frontiers of knowledge, turn dreams into discovery, and cultivate human talent for the benefit of society and the world we live in."

Michael Witherell, UCSB vice chancellor for research, said, "The breadth of outstanding research at UCSB is truly remarkable. UCSB researchers are receiving support to explore how to improve the life chances of young Latinas, how to light our homes with less energy, and how to protect coral reefs in the South Pacific."

In the fiscal year ending June 30, support from federal agencies amounted to $112 million, or 70 percent of UCSB's total research funding. The National Science Foundation (NSF) was the largest single source, as it has been for more than a decade. The second largest funding source for UCSB research was the Department of Defense (DOD), followed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

UCSB ranked 18th among research universities in total NSF support received during the 2005 federal fiscal year (the most recent year for which the NSF provides such statistics), a remarkably strong position for the campus, given the size of UCSB's faculty, Witherell noted. Similarly, UCSB ranked among the top 20 universities in five of the seven NSF directorates: biological sciences, computer and information sciences and engineering, geosciences, mathematical and physical sciences, and social, behavioral, and economic sciences. In addition, UCSB ranked 15th among universities in research funding from the DOD for fiscal 2005.

Witherell stressed that research funding is not the most accurate measure of UCSB research, since it is dominated by fields that receive the greatest amount of federal funding. "UCSB research also has great impact in fields for which the national funding is much less, including the arts, humanities, social sciences, and education," Witherell said. "The vitality of UCSB research in these areas is not reflected in tables of research funding."

Private support for UCSB research at the end of June also accounted for $20.4 million, and support from industry totaled $8.8 million. The UC system provided $13.7 million, and the State of California and local government added $3.7 million.

Among the major research grants awarded to the campus last year:

  • The Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation of Tokyo extended their successful research and education alliance for a new term of four years. Under the terms of the new agreement, Mitsubishi Chemical will invest between $8.5 million and $10 million at UCSB over the next four years. The funds will support research as well as the administration of the Mitsubishi Chemical Center for Advanced Materials (MC-CAM), a highly productive research unit established in 2001 with the support of Mitsubishi Chemical, Japan's largest chemical company. In a very short time, the center established itself as an engine of innovation, responsible for a large number of research publications, new patents, and inventions. The center's researchers are involved in creating exciting new materials, devices, and advanced fabrication technologies for the specialty chemical and electronic materials marketplace.

  • A five-year, $5 million grant from the National Science Foundation established a new National Science and Engineering Center to study the societal implications of nanotechnology. The Center for Nanotechnology and Society, one of only two such NSF-funded centers in the country, is an international collaborative enterprise that involves social scientists, humanists, and scientific partners from all over the nation and the globe.

  • The UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, UCSB, UC Berkley, and Stanford University launched what will be one of the world's largest joint research programs–The Western Institute of Nanoelectronics–focusing on the pioneering technology called "spintronics." The institute, with its headquarters at UCLA, was established with grants totaling $18.2 million, funded primarily by industry sponsors and a $3.84 million UC Discovery matching grant. Its interdisciplinary researchers will explore and develop advanced research devices, circuits, and nanosystems.

  • A three-year, $1.5 million grant from the NSF to establish the Partnerships for International Research and Education Program with China in chemistry, physics, materials science, and chemical engineering. The UCSB project will bring together seven top UCSB scientists with seven of their counterparts from a leading institute in the People's Republic of China to jointly mentor a select group of doctoral students at UCSB. The new program seeks to create new international collaborations through long-term, large-scale projects that contribute to the development of a diverse, globally educated U.S. science and engineering workforce.

For more detailed information about research funding visit http://research.ucsb.edu/pubs/charts_and_graphs_2005-2006.shtml

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