National R&D Performance Patterns - by Sector
NSF 95-304

National R&D Performance Patterns - by Sector

Federal Government
Universities and Colleges
Academically Administered FFRDCs

The sectoral shares of U.S. R&D performance have shifted slightly during the past decade. In 1980, industry performed 71 percent of the Nation's R&D; the academic sector-including FFRDCs administered by universities-accounted for 13 percent; the Federal Government, 12 percent; and the nonprofit sector, 3 percent. As industry's defense related R&D efforts accelerated in the early eighties, its share of the performance total rose to a 1985 peak of 74 percent. Concurrently, academic R&D performance slipped slightly, to 12 percent of the U.S. total, and the Federal share dropped to 11 percent. The nonprofit R&D share remained at 3 percent in 1985.

Growth in academic R&D performance has since outpaced that of the other sectors. From 1985 to 1994 real R&D performance growth by universities and colleges (excluding FFRDCs) is estimated at a 5 percent annual rate, compared with an estimated average annual real growth of 1 percent for industry. Federal intramural performance during this period is virtually unchanged; and the estimated increase in real R&D performance by the nonprofit sector is 3 percent per year. As a result of these divergent R&D performance trends, industry is expected to account for 72 percent of the national R&D performance total in 1994. Academia's share (including FFRDCs) should climb to 15 percent; the Federal Government's share is estimated at 10 percent; and the nonprofit sector is expected to account for 3 percent of U.S. R&D performance (table 2).

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