Explore Illinois Research & Innovation

The Power of Illinois Research & Innovation

Research is an engine that powers the local and state economy, creating new approaches to vexing problems, a tech-savvy, highly skilled workforce, new companies and ventures, and even entirely new industries.  Explore the impact of the Illinois Research Enterprise below. 

Illinois Research Report (PDF) | Illinois Research Overview (PPT)


By The Numbers

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Total Research Expenditures, FY21

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Faculty Members

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Square Footage for Research

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Centers, Labs, and Research Institutes


Innovation and Impact

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$40M in newly announced NSF awards to advance research in neuron-based computing and expand the capabilities of U.S. supercomputing

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A 9% increase in DOE research expenditures (placing us third in the nation in DOE funding). Our NIH support has increased nearly 40% over the last five years.


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Partnership in the Taylor Geospatial Institute, a first-of-its-kind center using geospatial science to develop solutions to global challenges.





Illinois Research Institutes:
Converge, Research, Innovate, and Create



Ten research institutes that transcend college, school, and departmental boundaries to elevate ideas, drive discovery, and push the limits of our knowledge.

Illinois Research Institutes




Equipment, Tools, and Resources for Research

Conducting cutting-edge research requires world-class facilities, tools, and services. From microscopes to manuscripts, Illinois researchers have access to a range of equipment and resources that support inquiry and discovery. Below is a glimpse of the resources available to our research community.

Explore Research Centers, Institutes, and Programs | Find Core Facilities, Labs, and Services



University of Illinois Research Park 

A dynamic environment for established companies and start-up ventures alike. Companies locate in the Research Park to recruit high-quality technical talent, collaborate with the University, and speed up the innovation process.  


Companies, including corporate innovation centers and university start-ups alike


Employees, the third largest collective employer in Champaign County 


Start-up tenants at EnterpriseWorks, a startup incubator for early-stage tech firms


Venture capital/private equity financing raised by startup companies since the opening of the EnterpriseWorks incubator in 2003




FY20 Technology Management and Commercialization

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215 new invention reports 

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62 active start-up companies*

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201 U.S. patent applications

*Including 40 in Illinois!



Inclusive Innovation

Research is about asking questions and seeing things in new ways. Developing new knowledge requires creative, innovative thinking, work made better by a diversity of viewpoints and perspectives. Particularly when it comes to interdisciplinary research, including collaborators of different backgrounds, ethnicities, sexual orientations, physical abilities, generations, or genders isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do.

Illinois has affirmed many times that without diversity, there is no excellence. Simply put, we don’t pursue diversity for diversity’s sake. Rather, we pursue it because we are firmly fixed on achieving excellence in the Illinois research enterprise.

Members of our research community come from every corner of the globe. In the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation and our portfolio units, we firmly believe that we can only be excellent when we fully embrace people with varied perspectives and experiences. We strongly support the programs, services, and activities that ensure such inclusivity.

Male doctoral student talking with female professor.