Impacts of grants and contracts on academic researchers’ interactions with industry


Based on a representative national sample of 1564 academic researchers, we investigate the impacts of research grants and contracts on the nature and extent of faculty research and technology activities with industry. A particular focus is on understanding the independent contributions of industry and government grant sources on levels of industrial involvement. In addition to examining the source of grants, the study controls for a number of independent factors including: scientific field, research center affiliation, tenure status, and gender. Results suggest independent effects of grants and contracts on industrial activities. Grants and contracts from industry have a significant effect on academic researchers’ propensity to work with industry, as measured by an “industrial involvement scale.” Federally-sponsored grants also have an impact in increasing work with industry, but a more moderate one. Further, those with more grants and contracts (of each type) have a greater propensity for industrial involvement than those who have such contracts but fewer. This holds even when proxies for productivity and career stage are introduced in regression equations. The analysis also considers whether provision of grants and contracts is best viewed as a predictor of industrial involvement or just another type of industrial involvement using factor analysis and nested multivariate modeling to compare effects.

Full Paper

Bozeman and M. Gaughan (2007). “Impacts of Grants and Contracts on Academic Researchers’ Interactions with Industry,” Research Policy, 36: 694-707.