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Ten States Account for More than 60% of State Agencies' FY 2007 R&D Expenditures

NSF 10-306 | November 2009 | PDF format. PDF  

by Richard J. Bennof[1]

State agency expenditures for research and development and R&D facilities (construction projects, major building renovations, land and buildings acquisitions intended primarily for R&D use) totaled $1.3 billion in FY 2007.[2] The expenditures of 10 states (New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida, California, New Jersey, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, and North Carolina) accounted for 62% of all state-agency R&D. The 7 leading states, ranked by R&D expenditures, were also among the 10 top states the year before.[3] This InfoBrief presents summary statistics from the FY 2007 Survey of State Agency Research and Development Expenditures, sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF).

The FY 2007 survey is the most recent NSF survey of R&D activity performed and funded by state government agencies in each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Agency- and state-specific totals for a number of respondents varied considerably from data reported in FY 2006, owing in part to respondents' relative inexperience in tracking and measuring R&D, though they generally reported that FY 2007 totals are more accurate. Because of this variation, cross-year comparisons are not presented.

Nationwide Totals

State agencies expended a total of $1.3 billion for R&D and R&D facilities in FY 2007, with $1.2 billion of that sum spent on R&D (table 1). Most of those funds ($916 million) supported external performers' R&D programs, primarily those of academic institutions ($534 million) and companies and individuals ($248 million). State agencies spent $309 million on R&D that the state agencies themselves performed (internal R&D).

TABLE 1. State agency R&D and R&D facilites expenditures: FY 2007.

  Table 1 Source Data: Excel file

Of the $1.2 billion in R&D expenditures reported by the states, most ($954 million) originated from state and other nonfederal sources. The federal government was the original R&D funding source for $272 million controlled by state agencies. Overall, basic research expenditures (which varied considerably by state) accounted for 22% ($270 million) of the states' R&D total.

State-by-State Reporting

Levels of reported state agency R&D expenditures ranged from $673,000 in New Mexico to more than $128 million in New York (tables 2, 3). Three states (New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania) led all others in terms of total R&D state agency expenditures, with each reporting R&D expenditures of more than $100 million in FY 2007. Collectively, these three states accounted for 28% of the $1.2 billion state R&D total.

TABLE 2. State agency expenditures for R&D, by state and performer: FY 2007.

  Table 2 Source Data: Excel file

TABLE 3. State agency expenditures for R&D and basic research, states ranked by all R&D expenditures: FY 2007.

  Table 3 Source Data: Excel file

Indiana state agencies reported the largest level of internal R&D expenditures ($36 million) in FY 2007 (table 2). Agencies in Ohio ($54 million), New York ($28 million), and Michigan ($26 million) reported the most R&D dollars to companies and individuals. Agencies in New York ($68 million), Pennsylvania ($61 million), and California ($56 million) reported the largest amounts of R&D funding to academic institutions.

These amounts are for R&D expenditures that flow through state agencies' budgets and do not include direct appropriations from state legislatures to universities, colleges, and private organizations. The $534 million in expenditures to support R&D performance by academic institutions reported by state agencies differs from expenditures on R&D activities reported by universities and colleges in FY 2007 ($3.1 billion) that were funded from state and local government sources.[4] This difference is largely attributable to state legislatures' direct appropriations to state-run universities, which are included in the Academic R&D Survey but not in the Survey of State Agency R&D Expenditures. Another likely factor is the exclusion of R&D at agricultural experiment stations from state survey totals.

Comments on the Data

All 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico participated in the FY 2007 survey, and 444 of their agencies responded. The data for the FY 2007 survey were collected by the U.S. Census Bureau.

State R&D totals displayed considerable volatility between FY 2006 and FY 2007, the two years for which comparable data are available. Although total state agency R&D expenditures increased by 20% between FY 2006 and FY 2007, 28 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico reported overall increases, and 22 states reported overall declines. Large changes (positive or negative) in state agency expenditures are not uncommon, especially for discretionary spending items, such as R&D. However, given that states have comparatively little experience in tracking and measuring R&D, there is a high likelihood that some portion of the reported changes reflects measurement and coverage errors. Details are provided in the technical notes for this survey's detailed statistical tables report (see "Data Availability," below).

The data reported here focus exclusively on R&D expenditures of state departments, agencies, commissions, and dependent entities, with the exception of state-run colleges and universities. Several industry-specific state commissions, which are generally chartered by state legislatures but are administered independently, were considered state agencies and included in the survey. Universities, colleges, or other higher education entities surveyed under the NSF Survey of R&D Expenditures at Universities and Colleges were out of scope, as respondents, for this effort, as were laboratories and experiment stations controlled by state universities and entities determined to be a nonprofit or private organization, as defined by Census Bureau government classification.

Data Availability

A full set of detailed tables from this survey will be available in the report State Agency Research and Development Expenditures: Fiscal Year 2007 at http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/nsf10301/. Individual detailed tables from the 2007 survey may be available in advance of publication of the full report. For further information, please contact the author.


[1]  Richard J. Bennof, Research and Development Statistics Program, Division of Science Resources Statistics, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 965, Arlington, VA 22230 (rbennof@nsf.gov; 703-292-7783).

[2]  The terms "state" and "state agencies," used for brevity in this report, include activities and organizations within the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

[3]  Jankowski JE. 2008. New NSF Survey Finds Six States Account for Nearly Half of State Agencies' R&D Expenditures. InfoBrief NSF 08-309. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, Division of Science Resources Statistics. Available at http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/infbrief/nsf08309/.

[4]  National Science Foundation, Division of Science Resources Statistics. 2008. Academic Research and Development Expenditures: Fiscal Year 2007. Detailed Statistical Tables NSF 09-303. Arlington, VA. Available at http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/nsf09303/.

National Science Foundation, Division of Science Resources Statistics
Ten States Account for More than 60% of State Agencies' FY 2007 R&D Expenditures
Arlington, VA (NSF 10-306) [November 2009]

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