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The University Resources Committee projected in a report released last month that the University's Education and General budget, which includes expenditures on administrative, academic and student support, "would see a 5.8 percent increase in indirect cost recovery from sponsored funding" in the next fiscal year, Deputy Provost Vincent Tompkins '84 wrote in an e-mail to The Herald.

The Division of Biology and Medicine would see a 15.8 percent growth in indirect cost recovery, he wrote. The budget increases are largely a result of increased federal funding from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Tompkins wrote.

The indirect cost recovery uses funds from external research sponsors — primarily the federal government — to "reimburse the University for overhead costs related to hosted sponsored research," according to the URC report.

The University's income from indirect cost recovery dropped "significantly" in recent years due to a number of changes made in federal agencies, according to the URC report.

"This flattening resulted from slower growth in federal funding, from a switch in grant-making practice that has led agencies to make a greater number of smaller grants, and from a tendency by some agencies to target offers of support to well-established investigators," the report reads.

But in the federal stimulus package's first year, 47 projects at Brown were supported with more than $33 million in grant funds through the stimulus, according to a Feb. 17 University press release. "Brown faculty made very strong efforts to apply for these funds and were very successful," Tompkins wrote.

The 5.8 percent growth in the Education and General budget — from $16.1 million in the current fiscal year to $17 million for the next fiscal year, according to the URC report — accounts for much of the growth in the University's overall budget, according to Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration Beppie Huidekoper. There was "hardly any growth overall if you take out the sponsored funding," she said.

Vice President for Research Clyde Briant estimated that researchers at Brown will be the beneficiaries of "more than $6 million in additional indirect cost recovery over the next two to three years as a direct result" of the federal stimulus, according to the URC report.

— With additional reporting by Sydney Ember


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