Wednesday, May 22

Research dollars recognized

Despite a $76 million decrease from 2003, UCLA ranks second in spending for the 2004 fiscal year

UCLA ranked second for research and development spending in the
sciences and engineering among universities, according to a recent
report released by the National Science Foundation.

In the 2004 fiscal year, UCLA spent $773 million on research,
according to the report.

The money was provided in part by federal grants and private
industry and foundations, many of which were won by faculty members
against competition from other research institutions, said Roberto
Peccei, vice chancellor of research at UCLA.

“This is just recognition of the quality of the research
that is done here, that we’re able to attract so much
federal, private and other funding,” Peccei said.

UCLA was ranked second behind Johns Hopkins University, which
spent $1.3 billion on research in 2004, according to the report.
The top 20 research universities spent over $42 billion that year
total, an increase of $2 billion in spending from the previous

Several other University of California campuses were on the
NSF’s list for 2004, including UC San Francisco, which was
fifth with $728 million; UC San Diego at seventh with $709 million;
UC Berkeley at 13th with $526 million; and UC Davis at 17th with
$512 million.

Despite UCLA’s high ranking, it was the only UC on the top
20 list that had a drop in research dollars between 2003 and 2004,
going from $849 million to $773 million. The only other school on
the list that recorded a drop in expenditures between those years
were the University of Michigan campuses.

The David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA accounts for
approximately 70 percent of the money that is attracted for
research, Peccei said, a distribution not unusual for a university
with a strong medical facility.

“For places that have a large medical school, the health
sciences bring in the lion’s share of the research,” he

Engineering and the physical sciences each attract about 10
percent of total research funding.

Peccei also attributed UCLA’s high rank to its large size
and close-knit campus, which fosters interdisciplinary research
““ research that is more applicable to real life.

“Most problems in science and society do not fall squarely
into one discipline. They go across disciplines,” he

UCLA’s top ranking also reflects its resistance to
pressure from shrinking available resources, said Lawrence Lokman,
university spokesman.

Due to the competitive nature of research grants, UCLA’s
high ranking in research spending is direct evidence of its success
in research, said Leonard Rome, senior associate dean for research
at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine.

“We wouldn’t be No. 2 if we weren’t doing
terrific research,” he said. “The places that receive
the most grant money are the ones that do the best

Money for research at UCLA has produced fruitful results and has
contributed to innumerable breakthroughs in a variety of
disciplines, Peccei said.

“Almost every day there are headlines in which some
breakthrough or other is reported,” he said.

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