Distribution of academic research funds: a case of Japanese national research grant
- 345 Downloads
Drawing on a database of the competitive research funds in the Japanese academia, this study examines the distribution of research grants at the university and individual levels. The data indicates high inequality at the university level and slightly lower inequality at the individual level. Over the last three decades, the total grant budget has greatly increased and an increasing number of researchers have received the funds. Simultaneously, large-size grants have become more common and multiple awarding (i.e., one researcher receives more than one grant simultaneously) has become more frequent. These changes taken together, the level of inequality has not been changed substantially. The extent of inequality largely differs between scientific fields; especially high in basic natural sciences and relatively low in social sciences. A close examination of inequality over researchers’ career indicates different patterns of transition between fields and cohorts. Finally, both at the university and individual levels, the funding distribution is found more unequal than the distribution of publications as an output indicator.
KeywordsResearch grant Funding Inequality Academia University
JEL ClassificationH81 I23 I28 D63
I appreciate Prof. Aldo Geuna at the University of Turin and Prof. Diana Hicks and Prof. John P. Walsh at Georgia Institute of Technology for their insightful comments. I thank Prof. Hideaki Takeda at the National Institute of Informatics for providing the grant database. This study is supported by Postdoctoral Fellowships for Research Abroad of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.
- Center for National University Finance and Management. (2009). Research on tuition and expenses for basic education and research at national universities. Japan: Chiba.Google Scholar
- Center for National University Finance and Management. (2010). Research report of the finance and administration of national universities. Chiba, Japan.Google Scholar
- Denavas-Walt, C., Proctor, B. D., & Smit, J. C. (2009). Income, poverty, and health insurance coverage in the United States: 2008. Washington, DC: United States Census Bureau.Google Scholar
- Hicks, D. M., & Katz, S. (2009). Toward a science policy framework addressing extreme inequity and resource distribution in research. http://works.bepress.com/sylvan_katz/1.
- Kneller, R. (2010). The changing governance of Japanese public science. In R. Whitley, J. Gläser, & L. Engwall (Eds.), Reconfiguring knowledge production: Changing authority relations in the sciences and their consequences for intellectual innovation. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Lotka, A. J. (1926). The frequency distribution of scientific productivity. Journal of the Washington Academy of Science, 16, 317–323.Google Scholar
- MEXT Subcommittee of Academic Science. (2003). What big science should be. Tokyo, Japan: The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology.Google Scholar
- MEXT Subcommittee of Academic Science. (2008). The direction of urgent measures on Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research: The summary of discussion Part 2. Tokyo, Japan: The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology.Google Scholar
- National Institute of Science and Technology Policy. (2009). Collecting the data study for evaluating the achievement of the S&T Basic Plans. NISTEP Report, 133. Tokyo, Japan: NISTEP.Google Scholar
- OECD. (1997). The evaluation of scientific research: Selected experiences. Paris, France: OECD.Google Scholar
- Ray, D. (1998). Development economics. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar