USC’s research grants drop 7 percent

August 8, 2013 

The University of South Carolina is having to remove one of the oldest trees on the Horseshoe, an estimated 130-year-old live oak, for pedestrian safety.

TIM DOMINICK — tdominick@thestate.com Buy Photo

— The University of South Carolina brought in $220 million in research funding and sponsored awards during the fiscal year that ended June 30, the institution’s third-highest total ever but a 7 percent drop from the previous year.

USC said it is encouraging faculty to compete nationally for large interdisciplinary grants by strengthening collaborations that span departments.

“We are seeing the results,” said Prakash Nagarkatti, USC’s vice president for research. “For example, two large national centers were established at USC this year: One for $28 million to pursue disability research, and the other for $10 million to study inflammation.”

Research funding in fiscal 2013 was down 7.6 percent from the previous year, which was $238 million, an all-time high. USC’s Nagarkatti said the drop was expected because of the “challenging fiscal situation in Washington.”

“Over 70 percent of the research carried out by the universities across the U.S. is funded by nationally competitive grants awarded by federal agencies,” Nagarkatti said. “We knew that federal sequestration and other governmental budget cuts would decrease our funding.

-- From staff reports

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