Iowa State’s external funding reaches $360.2 million in fiscal year 2012

Electric motors

Iowa State University's Dionysios Aliprantis is working to improve the performance of electric motors and generators. His work is supported by the National Science Foundation. Larger photo. Photo by Bob Elbert.

AMES, Iowa – External funding at Iowa State University rose to $360.2 million in fiscal year 2012 from the previous fiscal year’s total of $342.3 million, an increase of $17.9 million and the second highest total achieved by the university.

The external funding includes grants, contracts, gifts and cooperative agreements from federal, state and local government sources and from corporations, foundations and other universities.

The increase this fiscal year reverses a downward trend following a record high of $388.2 million in 2010 after federal stimulus programs expired, according to Sharron Quisenberry, Iowa State’s vice president for research and economic development.

The external funding supports Iowa State students—including student financial aid— and researchers, equipment purchases, education programs, buildings and extension activities. The funding is in addition to the state appropriation of $216.6 million to support daily operations of the university.

“I see this increase in funding over last year’s total as a very positive sign for our university and state, especially given how competitive the environment has become for attracting these dollars,” said Quisenberry. “First and foremost, it takes talent on the part of our faculty, researchers, staff and students to be successful in attracting this funding, and then it takes determination and persistence. I appreciate their efforts on behalf of Iowa State.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture was the single largest source of federal agency funding in fiscal year 2012, at $56.8 million. The second highest source was the U.S. Department of Energy at $46.3 million. The third highest was the National Science Foundation at $37.4 million.

“The strength of Iowa State University’s research enterprise is evident in our success in obtaining funding from external sources,” said Iowa State University President Steven Leath. “This success is very important to the State of Iowa as we continue to build our research in areas critical to the state’s economic future.” 

Funding from federal agencies totaled $208.7 million, up from $189.9 million the previous fiscal year. Non-federal funding, which includes state and local government, businesses and corporations, foundations, and universities and colleges, totaled $151.5 million, down from $152.4 million the previous fiscal year.

Details of Iowa State’s external funding over the last four fiscal years:

Iowa State University Sponsored Funding

  FY12 FY11 FY10 FY09

Federal agency

Dept. of Agriculture $56,823,321 $33,771,291 $51,883,266 $35,666,132
Dept. of Defense $8,519,936 $13,379,745 $10,945,023 $7,321,064
Dept. of Health and Human Services $21,812,010 $23,305,165 $20,533,625 $16,594,149
Dept. of Education $28,718,612 $31,694,140 $28,662,828 $20,867,672
Dept. of Commerce $2,687,877 $2,295,450 $3,122,887 $2,869,301
Dept. of Interior $709,986 $311,590 $388,796 $333,635
Dept. of Transportation $386,838 $4,578,223 $7,986,419 $6,172,517
Dept. of Energy $46,334,616 $36,169,324 $59,267,985 $28,091,177
National Science Foundation $37,448,520 $37,872,682 $46,797,648 $28,171,325
NASA $1,316,772 $1,023,479 $1,529,047 $1,369,318
Environmental Protection Agency $1,071,204 $472,392 $245,462 $854,432
Other $2,860,274 $5,026,203 $5,631,671 $3,668,217
Subtotal $208,689,966 $189,899,684 $236,994,657 $151,978,939

Non-federal agency

State, county, city government $32,053,027 $32,156,259 $35,139,824 $33,034,881
Businesses, corporations $45,467,779 $43,130,632 $38,681,411 $39,365,249
Foundations, associations $50,793,212 $57,396,777 $55,899,785 $62,558,955
Individuals $0 $90,000 $120,800 $160,000
Universities, colleges $18,710,706 $16,216,380 $17,757,528 $14,566,162
Other $4,454,790 $3,401,065 $3,593,586 $3,565,019
Subtotal $151,479,514 $152,391,113 $151,192,934 $153,250,266

Sponsored funding total

  $360,169,480 $342,290,797 $388,187,591 $305,229,205