Faculty employment and R&D expenditures at Research universities

Liang Zhang, Ronald G. Ehrenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study uses panel data to examine the relationship between faculty employment and external R&D expenditures at Research and Doctoral institutions over a 15-year period of time. On average, a 1% increase in the number of full-time faculty is associated with about 0.2% increase in total R&D expenditure. Further, a one percentage point increase in the share of full-time faculty members that are not on tenure-track lines is associated with a decrease in total external R&D expenditure by about 0.6%, suggesting that full-time faculty that are tenured or on tenure-tracks are the main category of faculty that generate external R&D funding. Further, our results suggest that an increasing usage of part-time faculty, holding constant the institution's full-time faculty size, boosts an institution's external R&D expenditures. On average, a one percentage point increase in the share of part-time faculty members is associated with a 0.44% increase in the total external R&D expenditures. Increases in graduate student enrollments are associated with increases in external R&D expenditures. Finally, an institution's external R&D expenditures are significantly influenced by both the amount of its own institutionally financed research expenditures and the level of federal funding for research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)329-337
Number of pages9
JournalEconomics of Education Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2010


  • Faculty employment
  • Research & Development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Economics and Econometrics


Dive into the research topics of 'Faculty employment and R&D expenditures at Research universities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this