On Nov. 2, UNC Charlotte faculty, staff and students were celebrated for widespread achievement in research at the 2023 Niner Research Reception. The event, held in the Popp Martin Student Union, spotlighted the accomplishments of hundreds of researchers in approximately 40 award categories, which included recognition for individual and collaborative work, external and internal grant awards, books and music published and edited, new patents and more.
“These awards underscore UNC Charlotte's strategic goal to emerge as a top-tier global research university,” said Chancellor Sharon L. Gaber. “The numbers speak for themselves. Over the past decade, Charlotte research expenditures have increased an astounding 123%, positioning us among the country’s fastest-growing research universities. Last year alone, we shattered records for research expenditures at more than $55.2 million and also for new research awards. We again rank in the top 10 in the U.S. per research dollar spent for the number of new patents filed and also for the number of new startups formed. And this great work is just the beginning.”
Among the 2022-23 achievements observed were:
- 11 “large award” in excess of $1 million
- 51 first awards as principal investigator; a total of 122 PI awards
- 6 National Science Foundation CAREER Awards
- 43 collaborative Awards
- 76 internal seed award grants
- 32 new patents
- 7 new startups
- 66 books published; 51 edited books
- 33 graduate and professional Student Government awards
- 30 undergraduate research conference awards
John Daniels, vice chancellor for research, noted the attention UNC Charlotte research activity is garnering regionally and nationally, reiterating a goal of the Division of Research to support all aspects of research university-wide. This is occurring over the next three years through a $9 million investment in core facilities, post docs and seed grants as well as by increasing the size of the division’s staff by 25%.
“We’re at an inflection point for research in all its forms at UNC Charlotte,” Daniels said. “Never before have so many major corporations and national and statewide organizations supported us, including NC Innovation, which is poised to provide funds up to $10 million over the next 20 months for research commercialization. At the same time, we are receiving greater encouragement from the UNC System and our state and federal delegations. They see the direction we’re heading.”
In 2022-23, UNC Charlotte rose 41 spots in the U.S. News & World Report overall rankings to join the nation’s top 100 public universities. And according to NSF HERD rankings it is among the top one-third of all U.S. research universities.
“Research is fundamental to the mission of UNC Charlotte,” said Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Provost Jennifer Troyer. “As North Carolina’ public research university, we are a hub for innovation and research that continues to transform our city, region and state.”
Photo: Deb Thomas, associate vice chancellor for research; John Daniels, vice chancellor for research; Jennifer Troyer, provost; and Sharon L. Gaber, chancellor.