Reports & Products

IRIS is a national initiative creating new, independent statistical evidence about the economic impact of research. Our reports help member institutions document the economic impact of scientific research, manage their research portfolios, and inform outreach to federal and state stakeholders.

Spending Profile Report - data on the people, agencies and spending associated with sponsored research funds.

Focusing on sponsored research spending for each member institution, this report details individuals paid on research funds, highlights the funders that provide the support, and shows national and regional distribution of research spending.

This partial demonstration of an IRIS Spending Report shows individuals paid by research grants at all IRIS member universities, from faculty, staff and administrators to graduate and undergraduate students and employment patterns of federal research awards. The full version of this report, available to IRIS members, also contains maps showing the distribution of research spending to vendors by county and congressional district, and benchmarking information. To see an example based on the fictional "IRIS University," download this full but non-interactive version (pdf).

Vendor Profile Report - information on the businesses providing goods and services to funded research projects.

Using member data linked to public and private datasets, this report shows the volume, locations, and ownership of vendors providing goods and services purchased with research dollars.

The IRIS Vendor Profile Report contains information on the amount of research funding spent with vendors owned by women and minorities, and classified as small businesses. The report also details which industries benefit from research contracts, including information on average wages and company size compared to the national average.

University-specific reports are available to member institutions. For example, see this non-interactive version based on the fictional "IRIS University." (pdf)

The examples below represent data aggregated from all IRIS members.

NOTE: To see a full but non-interactive version of this report, download this PDF. For more on this report, view a recent webinar by IRIS Executive Director Jason Owen-Smith at

Legislative Fact Sheets - research spending broken down by legislative district.

The Congressional Fact Sheet and State Legislative Fact Sheet break out university research spending by legislative district. These reports are meant to help with communications with state and federal lawmakers in discussions around the economic impact of research investments.


The IRIS Impact Finder - locate potential stories about the impact of research spending.


Externally-facing strategies

Most IRIS members have told us they use IRIS data reports for externally-facing stakeholders, such as legislators and other policymakers. They provide these data as part of their overall strategy of institutional analytics, using IRIS data to tell their stories to demonstrate the value and impact of research and education on their campuses.

Internally-facing strategies

IRIS members also use their reports in a variety of ways on their campuses. Many use IRIS reports to help make data-driven decisions around research administration issues.  Others use them to connect to and learn from campus constituents who have an interest in understanding their institution’s social and economic impact. The reports are shared with institutional leadership, from institute directors to deans to presidential speechwriters to governing bodies.

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