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Quarterly Reports

This is a quarterly summary of the research activity at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.


Download the Quarterly Research Report for Q4FY18

Click to download the Quarterly Research Report for Q4FY18

Proposal Submissions

In the fiscal year 2018 (FY18) the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UT) submitted 1,764 proposals representing a 2% increase over the number of proposals submitted in the previous fiscal year (FY17) and a 3% increase above the five-year average number of proposals submitted in the last five fiscal years (FY14-FY18). The total dollar value of the submitted proposals was $611 million signifying a 9% increase over the amount requested in FY17.

Several colleges have contributed to the increase in the total requested amount. College of Nursing (Nur) requested the largest amount in its history ($16 million) and more than doubled the amount it requested in FY17 reflecting 122% increase in FY18. Other colleges that displayed slight to significant increases in FY18 versus FY17 amounts were College of Architecture and Design (A&D) with 46% increase, A&S – 2% increase, College of Communication and Information (C&I) – 105% increase, TCE – 12% increase, RCI- 54% increase, and the UT Space Institute (UTSI) – 12% increase.

Looking at the colleges and centers, Tickle College of Engineering (TCE) requested the largest share – 40% of the total proposal amount – followed by the College of Arts and Sciences (A&S) and Research Centers and Institutes (RCI) both requesting 23% each.

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Click image to download the Quarterly Research Report for Q3FY18

Download the Quarterly Research Report for Q3FY18

The Office of Research and Engagement welcomed Victor McCrary as the new Vice Chancellor for Research in March. We look forward to his leadership in guiding UT Knoxville from research excellence to preeminence.

In the first three quarters of fiscal year 2018 (FY18), cumulative totals showed a six percent decrease in the total number of proposals submitted and a six percent increase in the amount of funding requested when compared to the first three quarters of the fiscal year 2017 (FY17). The average amount requested on a per proposal basis was roughly $353K versus $314K in FY17.
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Quarterly Research Report cover for Q2FY18

Download the Quarterly Research Report for Q2FY18

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville recorded increases across several metrics in the second quarter of fiscal year 2018 (Q2 FY18). Proposal dollars requested remained on a steady rise, awarded dollars improved since the first quarter, and dollars spent on Research and Development (R&D) exceeded expectations.

While the total number of proposals submitted in the first two quarters of FY18 is slightly down (a 6 percent decrease), the total amount requested ($328 million) represents a bold increase of 21 percent when compared to the first two quarters of FY17 (table 1, fig. 1 and fig.2). This increase is contributed to the stable positive trend demonstrated by the Tickle College of Engineering (TCE) and to the significant increases in the proposal amounts requested by the College of Nursing, and Research Centers and Institutes in Q1-Q2 FY18 (fig.9). In addition, there were 45 proposals submitted requesting amounts of $1 million or larger in the first two quarters of FY18. The total amount requested by these 45 proposals was $174 million. Thirty-six of these proposals aim to perform basic research, while the rest would provide public service.
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Q1 FY18 Research Activity Report

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The total award amount received this quarter is down 19% compared to the first quarter of the FY17 (table 1, fig. 3). It is an across-the-board decrease affecting almost all colleges, centers, and institutes (table 1, fig. 10). Most of the reduction comes from federal agencies, with the biggest drop being from the National Science Foundation (fig. 5). However, it is reassuring that the total award amount this quarter was only $4.5 million less than the five-year average for the first quarter in the last five fiscal years of FY14-FY18.

Also encouraging is the increase of $8.6 million in the amount awarded by the Tennessee local and state government—$10 million in Q1 FY18 compared to the $1.4 million in Q1 FY17. The award amount received from the state represents 20% of the total awarded amount received this quarter (fig. 7).

Looking at the total research expenditures, most of our colleges, centers and institutes have displayed slight to significant increases in the total amount expended on Research and Development (R&D) this quarter compared to the Q1 FY17. The Tickle College of Engineering and UT Space Institute both exhibit a growing trend in their total R&D expenditures in the last five fiscal years (table 1, fig. 11).
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FY2017 Q4 Research Report In fiscal year 2017, we saw a 4 percent increase in the total number of proposals submitted (1,725)—the largest number in UT history. The total amount requested for these submissions was $558 million, signifying an increase of 0.6 percent. UT researchers were awarded $166 million in FY17, representing a $12 million—or 8 percent—increase over FY16 and the largest amount received in the last five fiscal years.

Most of this year-over-year growth resulted from a $12 million increase in federal obligations. Federal Agencies accounted for 66 percent of the total sponsored obligations or $109 million and of the 30 funding agencies tracked by National Science Foundation  Higher Education Research and Development Survey (NSF HERD), Department of Energy (DOE) and National Science Foundation (NSF) accounted for 71 percent of our total award dollars. Looking at the specific federal agencies, the largest advance came from DOE – up $7 million compared to last year. We also received $4 million from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which represents the largest amount ever received from NASA in a given fiscal year.

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