NSF rankings show Mason ahead of research funding goals


Mason in top 25 in social, computer, and information science research funding

wilkins plaza from above
Photo by Evan Cantwell/Office of University Branding

George Mason University’s $230 million in research funding in fiscal year 2022 was a 7% increase from 2021, putting the university three years ahead of its goal of $225 million by 2025.

“We’re ahead of schedule and that is a testament to faculty, students, and staff researchers and those who support them who continue to drive discoveries with real-world impacts that make a difference in our communities,” said Andre Marshall, Mason’s vice president of research, innovation, and economic development. “The scholarship and community partnerships that thrive in our multidisciplinary and collaborative culture are a testament to the university’s commitment to research of consequence.”

The latest figures released by the National Science Foundation (NSF) show Mason’s research funding in the top 25 nationally in the areas of:

  • Social sciences: 10th among all universities (best in the Washington, D.C., area) and seventh among public universities.
  • Computer and informational science: 21st among all universities and 13th among public universities in federally funded research.
  • Engineering continued its impressive gains by moving up five places to 73rd nationally among all universities (rising 69 places since 2018), and advancing four spots to No. 52 among public institutions.

Overall, Mason’s research and development funding was 75th among public institutions and 60th among public institutions without medical schools.

“These rankings are a testament to the commitment of our remarkable social sciences faculty to lead impactful research that drives action that addresses the interconnected needs and priorities of our regional, national, and global communities,” Ann Ardis, dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHSS), said.

Added Ken Ball, dean of the College of Engineering and Computing (CEC): “The groundbreaking work in our college demonstrates our continued strength and substantial contribution to Mason’s overall research portfolio. For decades, Mason has proudly and consistently been a national leader in computer science. I’m proud that our research has lasting impacts across society.”

Some of the long-term projects either funded or ongoing in FY 2022 that have positioned Mason as a leader in research of consequence include:

Funding for the Virginia Climate Center was made possible through the efforts of Congressman Gerry Connolly (VA-11). Virginia Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine were the primary sponsors of the project to help police in encounters with individuals in mental health crisis. 

In the social sciences, which includes CHSS, the College of Public Health, the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution, the Schar School of Policy and Government, the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD), and the Donald G. Costello College of Business, initiatives came in several forms.

"The Schar School is a proud contributor to Mason's social science research drawing from a deep pool of esteemed scholars and rising stars engaged in cutting edge interdisciplinary and disciplinary research," said Schar School Dean Mark J. Rozell.

Some examples:

The NSF collected its data from 900 universities in the Higher Education Research and Development (HERD) Survey, sponsored by the NSF’s National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics unit.