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Quarterly Research Report: July 1–September 30

Download the Quarterly Research Report for Q1FY19

Click to download the Quarterly Research Report for Q1FY19


After a record year for total research expenditures in fiscal year 2018 (FY18), the first quarter of fiscal year 2019 (Q1 FY19), looks strong. The current estimate of the FY19 Total Research Expenditures (TREs) is $50 million, an increase of 16% over the first quarter of fiscal year 2018 (FY18).  This increase is based on the efforts of our many talented faculty and our internal efforts to accurately capture the institutional contributions to research.
Some of the positive takeaways for the first quarter of fiscal year 2019 (as compared to the first quarter of fiscal year 2018):

  • Proposal submissions up by 3%
  • Significant increases in proposal submissions and requested amounts by the College of Communications and Information (CCI) and the College of Social Work (SW)
  • College of Nursing (NUR) and SW saw substantial increases in award amount, receiving $1.3 million and $1.4 million respectively
  • 75% of all funding received during the first quarter of FY19 came from federal agencies
  • Department of Energy (DOE) remained the top agency providing UT $15 million or 30% of total awarded amount and 40% of the total federal funding
  • National Science Foundation (NSF) funding increased by $2.4 million

As a spotlight of funding diversification this quarter, researchers in the College of Social work were awarded $2.6 million by Maddie’s Fund, a foundation that provides funding to revolutionize the status and well-being of companion animals. AlignCare, a project led by Michael Blackwell, Donald Bruce, Kathleen Brown, William Nugent, and Linda Daugherty, will conduct a three-year, multi-site proof of concept study focused on the bonds between families and their companion animals. The program will be implemented in 8-10 diverse communities nationwide with the goal to expand to other communities throughout the United States

Although we observed increases in some sectors, funding from Tennessee Government sponsors came in 18% less than the previous year (state funding accounted for 20% in the Q1 FY18 and 2% in Q1 FY19). During this quarter NSF funding remained lower than our five year (FY15-FY19) average amount, and will command attention from ORE to help identify points of alignment between our faculty and NSF’s new points of emphasis.

Again, these figures represent the first quarter of FY19 funding as compared to the first quarter of FY18 and our challenges are not insurmountable. First quarter data shows the impact that can come of diversifying research within colleges and departments as the College of Social Work, Tickle College of Engineering, and College of Education, Health and Human Sciences accounted for the three largest awards for the quarter, respectively.

The UT discovery enterprise continues to grow and reflects the talent and innovative research of our great university.