12:00 AM

Research rankings continue to climb

COLUMBUS – The Ohio State University's push to become one of the nation's top public research universities is gaining momentum, according to newly released federal statistics documenting university research expenditures nationwide.

The university placed 8th among the nation's public institutions in total research expenditures in fiscal year 2005, reflecting a steady climb from 9th place last year and 10th the previous year. The rankings, which are based on the latest available statistics, showed Ohio State passing such respected universities as Cornell and the University of California at Berkeley since last year.

Among all research universities, public and private, Ohio State has moved up from 15th place to 12th, surpassing Cornell, Berkeley and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

"This is very, very good news," said university President Karen A. Holbrook.
"It's not only a reflection of our commitment to becoming a top-ranked institution, but it showcases the excellence of our faculty, students, staff and facilities."

Ohio State's total research expenditures were $609 million in 2005, an increase of 17 percent over 2004's $518 million.

The university continues to be a national leader in conducting industry-financed research, moving up to 3rd place from 6th place last year.

"The competition for research dollars is fierce," said Robert McGrath, Ohio State's senior vice president for research. "It's clear that Ohio State's faculty are doing remarkably well in attracting industry funding for research and development in what is essentially a flat funding environment recovering from a three-year decline."

Using a multiplier developed by the U.S. Department of Commerce—indicating that for every $1 million spent on research, 32 jobs are created in the local economy—Ohio State's $609 million of research spending has generated almost 20,000 jobs in central Ohio.

McGrath attributes some of the expenditure increase to the state of Ohio's Third Frontier Project, a 10-year, $1.1 billion initiative to expand Ohio's high-tech research capabilities and promote start-up companies to create high-paying jobs.

"Ohio's investments in research and development certainly serve as a catalyst for increasing the university's partnerships with industry and stimulate ways to transfer innovative technology to the marketplace. Those research dollars leverage many more from federal and industrial sponsors that eventually benefit not only the university, but the local and statewide economy."