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National R&D; Performance Patterns - by State
NSF 95-304

National R&D; Performance Patterns - by State

The latest data available on the State distribution of R&D; expenditures are for 1991.[14] These data cover R&D; performance by industry, academia, and Federal agencies, and the federally funded R&D; activities of nonprofit institutions.[15]

The State distribution of R&D; performance is highly concentrated (chart 13). Of the total U.S. R&D; dollars spent and allocated by State in 1991 ($139 billion), more than one half was spent in six States (California, New York, Michigan, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania).[16] Moreover, about 70 percent of the national R&D; effort was performed in 10 States the preceding 6 together with Texas, Illinois, Ohio, and Maryland. Performance in California alone reached $28 billion. R&D; expenditures ranged between $5 billion and $11 billion in each of the other nine leading States. R&D; performance in each of the next 15 States totaled more than $1 billion; when combined with the first 10 States, they collectively accounted for 93 percent of the Nation's State distributed R&D; in 1991.

Chart 13

Each of the 10 States that ranked highest in terms of 1991 R&D; performance was also among the top 10 in 1975, although the order of their ranking has shifted somewhat. The largest three (California, New York, and Michigan) were unchanged from 1975. Pennsylvania was ranked fourth in 1975 but sixth in 1991. The ranking for Texas moved most during this period, increasing from 10th to 7th.

Not coincidentally, most of the States that are national leaders in total R&D; performance are also leading R&D; performers in one or more economic sectors (table 4). For example, of the 10 States that led in total 1991 R&D; performance-

These State rankings are somewhat different when the R&D; expenditures are normalized by size of State. Just as the ratio of R&D; expenditures to GDP is used to gauge a country's commitment to R&D;, the ratio of in State R&D; performance to gross state product (GSP) can be used to measure the R&D; intensity of a State's economy. For example, the largest R&D;/GSP ratio was achieved in New Mexico (8.5 percent) even though the State ranked 14th, in terms of total R&D; performance. The high research intensity of New Mexico's economy stemmed primarily from the considerable Federal support provided to the several FFRDCs in the State. On the other hand, California and New York led the Nation in terms of total R&D; performance but were 7th and 14th, respectively, in terms of their R&D;/GSP ratios.

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14. Although annual data are available on the location of R&D; performance by the academic and Federal sectors, NSF conducts surveys on the State distribution of industrial R&D; performance only in odd numbered years. At this writing, the 1993 industry R&D; survey data have not been processed, making 1991 the most recent year for which the State specific R&D; totals can be reported.

15. R&D; performance data include that conducted by FFRDCs in each sector of the economy. For a more detailed description of these data, as well as comparisons of 1985 R&D; expenditures with other economic measures (for example, population and gross state product), see NSF, Geographic Patterns: R&D; in the United States, NSF 89- 317 (Washington, DC, 1989).

16. Unless otherwise noted, these percentage distributions are based only on expenditures that could be distributed among the States. Excluded from the $160 billion 1991 national total are $2 billion of R&D; performed in Washington, DC, and an undistributed component of $19 billion, which primarily resulted from a change in the sampling design used for collecting industry's R&D; performance (table B-17). See the technical notes for information on this change.


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