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Policy

Federal Support For Science Fell In 2013

by Andrea Widener
July 6, 2015 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 93, ISSUE 27

Federal agencies agreed to spend 6% less on science and engineering in 2013, says a National Science Foundation report. The government’s 2013 funding obligations were $29.0 billion in 2013, the most recent year for which data is available, down from $30.8 billion in 2012. Support fell in almost every category, including research and development; fellowships and training; and facilities and equipment. This continues a decline from 2011, when the government provided $31.5 billion for science and engineering. In 2013, federal support went to 995 academic institutions, down from 1,073 in 2012. The largest amount for academic institutions—$1.5 billion—went to Johns Hopkins University and its Applied Physics Laboratory. More than half of the 2013 funds—58%, or $16.8 billion—were distributed through the Department of Health & Human Services, which includes the National Institutes of Health. Support for NSF ranked second, with 17% or $4.9 billion. Science and engineering support declined from 2012 to 2013 for every agency except the Department of Energy.

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