by Andrew Gillen
There seems to be a lot of incorrect assumptions floating around about the role of universities in R&D, so I thought I would highlight the actual numbers on the matter from the National Science Foundation.
In 2006, 353.6 billion was spent on R&D (all figures in 2007 dollars), of which universities and colleges accounted for only 14% (49.3 billion).
But about two-thirds of non university R&D consists of development, whereas three-quarters of university R&D is basic research. This means that universities actually conduct around 57% of all basic research.
And most of the money for university R&D, 63%, comes from the federal government. Only 9 billion, or about 19% of total university R&D comes from the universities themselves.