The University of Chicago received a record $471.8 million in research funding and 2,096 awards in FY'09 from federal and non-federal sponsors, surpassing previous-year funding by 11 percent.
The Department of Health and Human Services, primarily the National Institutes of Health, increased funding by 4 percent while non-federal sponsored funding jumped 33 percent. A $32 million award from the National Science Foundation and $5 million in early American Recovery and Reinvestment Act awards also contributed to the increase.
Three-quarters of awards were from federal agencies, and the remainder were from non-federal sponsors including corporations, foundations and non-profit organizations. Sixty awards were for more than $1 million.
Over two-thirds of UChicago's federal funding came from DHHS. The University received 720 awards from the NIH; 30 awards were for more than $1 million. Among them:
- Richard L. Schilsky, Professor in Medicine and Chief of Hematology-Oncology, received $11 million from the NIH for Cancer and Leukemia Group B, a collective effort of 26 academic medical centers and more than 200 affiliated community hospitals to improve cancer treatment through research and clinical trials.
- Andrzej Joachimiak, Senior Fellow of the Institute for Genomics and Systems Biology and the Computation Institute, was awarded $10 million by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences for his work as an executive committee member and principal investigator of the Midwest Center for Structural Genomics. The center's primary mission is to develop and optimize integrated methods for determining protein structures through X-ray crystallography.
- Olaf Schneewind, Professor in Microbiology and Director of the Great Lakes Center for Excellence, received $7 million from the NIH to support the work of GLRCE to develop technologies to detect, prevent and counter bioterrorism and emerging infectious diseases.
- Michelle Le Beau, Professor in Medicine and Director of The University of Chicago Cancer Research Center, received two awards of more than $8 million from The National Cancer Institute for the UCCRC, which explores and develops innovative ways to prevent and reduce the effects of cancer.
- The NSF awarded $32 million, the University's top grant, to Ian Foster, the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor in Computer Science and Director of the Computation Institute. The award will enable the CI, a joint UChicago/Argonne institute, to expand and extend the operation of the TeraGrid, a national system of interconnected supercomputers devoted to open scientific research and science and technology education. Research conducted via the TeraGrid varies widely from global climate processes and earthquake hazard mitigation to stellar astronomy.
- The NSF also awarded $6 million to UChicago cosmologists Stephan Meyer, Professor in Astronomy and Astrophysics, and Physics, and Deputy Director of the Enrico Fermi Institute; and John Carlstrom, Professor in Astronomy and Astrophysics, and Physics, and Director of the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics.
Meyer received $3 million to further the Kavli Institute's work in answering the most fundamental questions about the beginning, history and constituents of the universe.
Carlstrom received $3 million for the South Pole Telescope, a collaboration of nine U.S. and Canadian institutions that operates at the NSF South Pole research station. The new 10-meter telescope maps large areas of the sky to explore the nature of dark energy, an unexplained phenomenon responsible for the observed acceleration in the expansion of the universe.
Private foundation support for University research doubled from FY'08 increasing by about $31 million; 12 awards were for more than $l million.
- Robert Townsend, the Elizabeth and James Killian Professor of Economics at MIT and Research Associate at UChicago, received $15 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in support of the Social Sciences Division's Consortium for Financial Systems and Poverty. The consortium, made up of researchers from around the world, generates new and rigorous research on financial services for the poor in countries like Brazil, Ghana, India, Kenya, Mexico, Sri Lanka and Thailand. Focusing specifically on the impact of savings and financial services on poor households, macro and regulatory issues, and the impact of mobile banking in developing countries, the consortium seeks to provide evidence to help improve programs and inform policy.
- Jean Bethke Elshtain, the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Social and Political Ethics in the Divinity School, received a $4 million award from the John Templeton Foundation for an interdisciplinary project called The Science of Virtue, which seeks intellectual contributions from scientists and humanists. The project studies the structures that enable members of a multicultural society to live together peacefully while valuing moral and ethnic diversity. The University's Arete Initiative, a campus endeavor created to facilitate and support the development of large-scale interdisciplinary research collaborations, helped to secure the grant.
Lastly, the University received more than $5 million in early ARRA awards from NIH and NSF.These awards support efforts to drastically accelerate scientific discovery through advanced computing technologies; develop new theoretical tools to analyze and discover new particles in nature; design effective therapies to intervene in diseases like leukemia and lymphoma.