Georgia State Sets Research Funding Record of $120 Million

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Georgia State University has set a research funding record, receiving awards of $120.2 million in fiscal year 2016.

Georgia State University has set a research funding record, receiving awards of $120.2 million in fiscal year 2016.

The total exceeds the previous record set last year when faculty earned $101 million in research support. Georgia State’s research funding has grown by nearly $40 million in the past two years.

“The increase in research awards is a testament to the strength and competitiveness of our faculty, staff and students,” said James Weyhenmeyer, vice president for research and economic development at Georgia State.

Funding from federal agencies, which accounts for more than 78 percent of the total research volume at Georgia State, grew by 30 percent. This included increases of 235 percent from the U.S. Department of Education, 18 percent from the National Science Foundation and 11 percent from the National Institutes of Health. Grants and contracts from industry grew by nine percent.

“In the last five years, our commitment to successfully compete for funding has helped secure outside support for research, which creates jobs and supports innovation in Atlanta and the state of Georgia,” Weyhenmeyer said. “We are committed to keeping Georgia State among the nation’s premier urban public research universities and one of Georgia’s best economic engines.”

Among the year’s key awards were:

  • An $8.9 million U.S. Department of Education First in the World grant awarded to Timothy Renick (Enrollment Management and Student Success) to conduct a four-year research study to evaluate the effectiveness of advising in increasing retention, progression and graduation rates for low-income and first-generation students;
  • Nearly $5 million for two collaborative National Institutes of Health-funded projects led by Christopher Basler (Institute for Biomedical Sciences and Center for Microbial Pathogenesis) to investigate filoviruses, which include the highly pathogenic Ebola virus and related viruses of concern as emerging pathogens and bioterrorism agents, and understand how these viruses evade innate antiviral defenses and to develop drugs that subvert these viral functions;
  • More than $2 million for a National Institutes of Health-funded tobacco research project designed to inform the regulation of tobacco products directed by Michael Eriksen (School of Public Health); and
  • A $2 million grant from the Institute for Educational Sciences, U.S. Department of Education awarded to Amy Lederberg (College of Education) to improve reading in children with impaired hearing.

Georgia State also started two new university-level research centers—the Mark Chaffin Center for Healthy Development and the Center for Molecular and Translational Medicine—dedicated to health and medicine. Researchers in the centers have already secured more than $55 million in external research funding.

“The scholarship of our faculty and staff and their commitment to research has advanced Georgia State’s reputation as a nationally recognized public research university,” Weyhenmeyer said. “The university’s ‘very high research activity’ designation by the Carnegie Foundation speaks to our success and further confirms that Georgia State is competing with the nation’s top urban research universities.”

For more information about research at Georgia State, visit

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Leah Seupersad
Georgia State University
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