By Marcene Robinson
Published November 30, 2023
Research expenditures across the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences reached a record-high $102 million during the 2023 fiscal year—an 11% increase over the previous year—eclipsing $100 million for the first time in school history.
SEAS faculty are the principal investigators on over 130 projects awarded during the past fiscal year, including 16 grants of more than $1 million. The rise in research funding has helped fuel unprecedented growth in the school, which has also experienced record levels of student enrollment and faculty hiring.
“The growth in external funding for our research excellence is an indication of the world-class scholarship of our faculty, staff, and students and their ability to tackle the greatest opportunities and challenges affecting society,” said Kemper Lewis, SEAS dean and professor. “Our faculty are driving and accelerating innovation in a multitude of areas that will help people live better lives, both now and in the future.”
“I always emphasize that our ambition is not motivated by pride, but impact,” said UB President Satish K. Tripathi during his 12th State of the University address on October 13. “Without a doubt our rising research expenditures validate the deepening impact of our disciplinary expertise.”
Funding allocated to SEAS researchers will help develop new semiconductors for ultra-high voltage power grids to reduce transmission losses and better provide climate resiliency, a new process for separating clean hydrogen from carbon dioxide to achieve net zero emissions of greenhouse gases, a program to boost retention and graduation rates among low-income students pursuing STEM degrees, and more.
Part of the record research expenditures also includes a $20 million award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to establish the AI Institute for Exceptional Education, which aims to develop AI systems that identify and assist young children with speech and/or language processing challenges.
The grants and contracts are provided by a range of institutions, including the NSF, National Institutes of Health, United States Department of Energy, National Security Agency, and U.S. Department of Defense.
The largest awards from fiscal year 2023 include: