Research expenditures at the universities granted by outside sources and
intra-university grants – excluding funding from the universities’ budgets –
totaled NIS 1.5 billion shekels during the last recorded 2008-2009 academic
year, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics.
The CBS relied on
data from the Science and Technology Minister’s National Council for Research
Announced on Tuesday, the figure rose over 5 percent
from the previous year, in which research using “special financing” reached NIS
1.45 billion. The external funding constituted 13% of all civilian R&D in
the country in 2008-2009.
According to the ministry, 63% of the funds
were allocated for research in the fields of mathematics, natural sciences and
medicine; 16% for social sciences and law; 16% for engineering and architecture;
3% for agriculture; and the remainder in undefined fields.
and 2009, slight changes occurred in the allocation of funds. Biological
research declined from 30% to 27%, physical sciences rose from 18% to 20%; and
engineering and architecture rose from 14% to 16%. The medical field remained
Almost 60% of the special funding originated in Israel, with
the rest from abroad.
Israeli funding was especially large in the fields
of humanities and law, social sciences and agriculture. The public sector paid
for 36% of special funding. While 30% originates in foundation money, the
business sector provided only 9%. The natural sciences recorded a relatively
large share of public funding from abroad.
National Research and
Development Council chairman Prof. Yitzhak Ben-Yisrael said that the high figure
for funding from abroad shows the “quality, competitive ability and the
international nature of university research in Israel.” He added that 40% of the
university research is collaborative with foreign institutions. “The data show
that Israeli universities network well with those abroad,” he said.
Ehud Gazit, the ministry’s new chief scientist, said that Israeli research
institutions are well known for their ability to attract competitive funding
among thousands of universities around the world. Recently, four Israeli
universities have been ranked among the 50 best in getting competitive financing
for their research, Gazit said.
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem has
the best record, receiving NIS 397 million for research in 2009 from special
funding. Tel Aviv University’s funds totaled NIS 318 m. The Weizmann Institute
of Science in Rehovot received NIS 243 m.
from abroad, followed by
Haifa’s Technion-Institute of Technology with NIS 225 m.and Ben-Gurion
University of the Negev in Beersheba with NIS 192 m. Bar-Ilan University in
Ramat Gan came next with NIS 88 m. and the University of Haifa garnered
NIS 59 m.