UGA Today

The University of Georgia’s research and development expenditures reached a record high of $477.5 million over fiscal year 2019. (Courtesy/UGA Today)

The University of Georgia’s research and development expenditures reached a record high of $477.5 million over fiscal year 2019, according to a UGA Today news release.

Research and development expenditures increased by 5.4% over the last year and by 34% over the past five years, according to the release.

“As UGA grows its research enterprise, we are expanding our positive impact on the world while strengthening the economy of our home state,” said President Jere Morehead in the release. “Gains in agricultural productivity; improvements to health care; the creation of new, marketable products — these are just a few of the many benefits stemming from UGA’s research and development that are driving our increased economic impact on Georgia, which is now estimated at $6.5 billion per year.”

Multiple UGA professors have received research grants over the past year, according to the release. Ted Ross, a professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine, received an award of up to $130 million from the National Institutes of Health in September 2019 to develop a universal flu vaccine. Ross initially received $8 million from the NIH, but the award could increase up to $130 million. If all contract options are exercised, the seven-year project would be the largest award ever received by UGA, according to a September 2019 UGA Today news release.

Jessie Kissinger, a genetics professor, won two awards totaling $16.2 million to develop health informatics databases, according to the release. David Okech, an associate professor in the School of Social Work, has been awarded nearly $20 million from the U.S. Department of State since 2018 to combat human trafficking.

UGA is currently ranked at number 57 in the National Science Foundation’s survey of overall research and development expenditures across U.S. universities, according to the release. The ranking is based on UGA’s fiscal year 2018 research and development expenditures, totaling $453.2 million. UGA currently ranks first for the number of new products brought to market among U.S. universities.

The release said new initiatives at the university, including the Innovation District and the construction of the $65 million I-STEM building, are expected to expand UGA’s reach in research.

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