Following the (NIH) money


As anyone who follows biomedical science knows, research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has fallen significantly since 2010—the end of the abrupt 2-year infusion of “stimulus” money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which temporarily boosted spending. Excluding that lucrative but fleeting windfall, the decline actually started a decade ago, at the end of the 5-year doubling of NIH’s budget in 2004.

An intriguing interactive graphic from National Public Radio reveals, however, that not every institution has suffered equally—or at all. Many institutions have suffered sizeable drops in their NIH funding, but a few have enjoyed hefty increases. Among the gainers are the Research Triangle Institute in North Carolina, which went from less than $30 million in NIH funding in 2001 to almost $80 million in 2013, and the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, which received just over $10 million in 2001 but by 2013 was up to nearly $30 million. Among major research universities, Columbia University’s NIH funding fell after the stimulus influx but remains higher than it was before the stimulus.

These interactive charts illustrate the dimensions of the overall change and allow users to look up particular institutions to see how they have fared.

Elsewhere in Science, 12 September 2014

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