R&D spending on the rise in Indiana

Senior technician Greg Volk sets up a sample of high-strength automotive steel for a draw bead test at the ArcelorMittal Global R&D facility in East Chicago. R&D spending in Indiana rose in 2015.

Research and development spending in Indiana rose to $7.6 billion in 2015, the most recent year for which data is available, up from $7.3 billion in 2014, according to a new report from Indiana University's Stats Indiana.

The National Science Foundation estimates Indiana ranked 17th nationwide in R&D expenditures in 2015, up from 18th the previous year. Local facilities such as ArcelorMittal Global R&D in East Chicago, Monosol's corporate headquarters in Merrillville and Purdue University Northwest's Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation in Hammond contributed to the estimated $1,159 in per capita R&D spending in Indiana in 2015, which ranks 23rd nationally.

R&D is one of the most high-end economic activities, accounting for 7 percent of U.S. Gross Domestic Product growth between 1995 and 2004, according to the National Science Foundation.

Keep reading for FREE!
Enjoy more articles by signing up or logging in. No credit card required.

Though R&D spending rose in Indiana in 2015, it still fell short of the peak period between 2011 and 2013 when as much as $8 billion a year was being invested in research and development across the state, according to Stats Indiana.

Industry accounted for the bulk — about $6.2 billion, or 81.6 percent — of Indiana's R&D spending in 2015, Stats Indiana reported. Universities contributed about $1.3 billion, or 17.3 percent of the total. 

The Hoosier state, the 16th most populous in the union, ranked 15th in industry spending on R&D, 16th in funding for research at public universities and 20th for funding at private colleges, according to the National Science Foundation. The vast majority of funding for R&D at the state's colleges comes from the federal government and institutional sources.


Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.