Daily News

UMass Research Grows to Record-high $813 Million

BOSTON — The University of Massachusetts research enterprise grew to $813 million in fiscal year 2022, an 8% increase over the previous year, according to the five-campus system’s latest annual research report.

Annual R&D at the Amherst, Boston, Dartmouth, Lowell, and Medical School campuses of UMass has grown by 23% over the past five years, boosted by large increases in federal research funding. The greatest concentration of UMass research spending is in the STEM fields, with 93%, or $754 million, in those disciplines. This includes $463 million focused on the life sciences, a critical economic sector for Massachusetts.

“The world class research being conducted at each of our nationally ranked universities is driving innovation in every region of Massachusetts and enhancing the education of our 74,000 students,” UMass President Marty Meehan said. “The discoveries made in UMass laboratories have been critical to society’s ability to confront major challenges, from COVID-19 to climate change, and will continue to be essential in our fast-changing world.”

UMass has the third-largest research portfolio among universities in Massachusetts and the fourth-largest in New England, after Harvard, MIT, and Yale.

Recent UMass research highlights include the following:

• UMass Amherst received a $15 million, five-year grant to fund the New England University Transportation Center (NEUTC), where researchers are focusing on developing “smart” roadways to improve safety and reduce congestion, developing safe approaches to automated vehicles, and embedding equity and community engagement in transportation planning.

• UMass Boston has launched a pilot project to enhance digital connections to minority communities with funding from a two-year, $2.97 million grant from the Department of Commerce.

• UMass Dartmouth has received $16.7 million, including $3.6 million this year, from the Office of Naval Research to support innovation related to marine technologies and the blue economy.

• UMass Lowell Associate Prof. Neil Shortland won a three-year, $429,000 Young Investigator Project grant from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research to study the impact of misinformation on people and how it can influence some toward extreme behavior.

• UMass Chan Medical School Professor Jennifer Tjia and her research team were recently awarded a $4.1 million, five-year grant from the National Institutes of Health to study caregiver engagement in serious illness and the impact of structural barriers, including racism.