UM Research contributed nearly $100 million in 2021 to Michigan’s economy

According to a report by the University of Michigan’s Institute for Science and Innovation Research, the school’s research enterprise contributed $97 million to the state’s economy in 2021. / / Stock Photo

The University of Michigan at Ann Arbor released a report from its Institute for Innovation and Science Research (IRIS) that shows the school’s research enterprise has contributed $97 million to the economy of the state in the last fiscal year.

“Research by teams across our three campuses continues to drive tremendous progress that positively impacts society, and through this important activity, we all play a vital role in accelerating economic growth. and strengthening our workforce,” says Rebecca Cunningham, UM Vice President. for research and the William G. Barsan Collegiate Professor of Emergency Medicine.

The report details the impact of university research spending on the economy and provides a geographic overview of Michigan-based vendors who provided goods and services to support UM research and scholarship activity.

Michigan-based companies have received more than $517 million since 2017 to provide goods and services in support of UM research projects. This includes everything from beakers and lab supplies to specially designed pediatric treadmills used by kinesiology researchers to improve the walking habits of children born with Down syndrome.

Companies based in Wayne County, for example, have received more than $35 million through contracts with UM researchers since 2017. One of those companies, a welding supply company based in Detroit, has received $2.3 million in research-related contracts over a three-year period to support a wide variety of UM projects, ranging from microelectronics and healthcare to sustainability.

In Muskegon County, a construction company specializing in docks and related materials worked with UM on fish habitat restoration as part of the St. Clair River project led by Michigan Sea Grant. The company was awarded a $1 million contract to build artificial spawning reefs along the river, helping to restore its local lake sturgeon population.

A woman-owned small business based in Burton has received more than $500,000 in research-related contracts since 2017 for its work providing UM teams with general laboratory supplies and equipment found in most research spaces on the three campuses.

“Data from IRIS highlights the many ways in which the university research enterprise contributes to the state of Michigan,” said Jason Owen-Smith, executive director of IRIS and professor of sociology and executive director of Research Analysis and Data Integration Office.

IRIS is a national consortium of research universities based at the Institute for Social Research and organized around an IRB-approved data repository. IRIS reports are made available to members when they submit their administrative research expenditure data, which then links to various other datasets to produce reports. No individual company, employee or student is identifiable in these reports.