We will strenghten the university's reputation in research and creative discovery by building upon existing areas of excellence and identifying new strategic opportunities.

To accomplish our goal, we will utilize a data-driven approach to identify and prioritize existing areas of distinction and emerging areas of excellence, and then develop plans to support strategic growth in these areas.

Additionally, we will establish collaborative groups of thought leaders and innovators to promote interdisciplinary collaboration. We will also utilize our campus resources and external connections to foster entrepreneurship, create economic and social impact, and support distinction in research and innovation.

Through this work, we aim to position our university at the forefront of research and creative discovery, which will in turn enhance the success of our talented collection of scholars, researchers, and artists. 

Highlights and Success

Aubree Larson Collecting Data

Innovating research by providing secure access to health data

The P3 funded Iowa Health Data Resource and its Data Enclave are opening new opportunities for health science research through the creation of a new clinical data warehouse.  

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Xian Jin Xie

Becoming a global leader in oral cavity cancer research

Supported by P3 funding to compete for an $11 million research grant, faculty at the University of Iowa are executing a vision to establish the University of Iowa as a leader in oral cavity cancer research.

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In this photo, University of Iowa graduate fellow Autumn Moore conducts research in a wet lab on campus. On Dec. 14, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds awarded an $8.2 million grant to enhance the growth of bioscience research and economic development on the campus of the University of Iowa.

$8.2M investment in University of Iowa laboratory space

An $8.2 million grant from Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds will enhance the growth of bioscience research and economic development at the University of Iowa through new wet lab space. 

Lab, algebra-based treatment of electricity, magnetism, light, and modern physics

Inventing new tools for radiation treatment for cancer

A P3 project is helping support the development of ultra-fast radiation treatment for cancer, which has shown the potential to protect healthy tissue while destroying cancer tumors. 

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Charles Stanier teaching students

Promoting collaborative, interdisciplinary research communities with pilot grants

The Jumpstarting Tomorrow P3 Project is leveraging faculty expertise and promoting innovation across disciplines, helping the University of Iowa advance its excellence in research and discovery.  

Stream sensor from Iowa Flood Center

New Center for Hydrologic Development

The University of Iowa is expanding its national reach with a new research center designed to improve the country’s ability to predict and manage water-related hazards as part of its role within a $360M national water consortium

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Joshua Doucette

Research ambitions yield big rewards

Joshua Doucette found his academic and career paths through research, joining faculty-led teams in space physics and particle physics during his undergraduate years at Iowa.

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Zoonotic Diseases

Supporting arts and humanities through community engaged scholarship

Faculty members at the University of Iowa are using Community Engaged Scholars grants to partner with communities across Iowa on research-based projects in the arts, humanities, or social sciences. 

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"What are our strengths? What connections are already in place? What trends are we seeing nationally? These are the questions we're looking to answer by working with stakeholders all across campus." 
-Marty Scholtz, Vice President for Research

Measuring Our Progress

The university has set specific targets or high-level indicators to monitor our institutional progress. We will regularly measure and assess improvements in these areas.

AAU Membership Indicators


  • Competitively funded federal research support
  • Faculty awards, fellowships, and memberships
  • Citations
  • Research/scholarship PhDs granted annually

Funding for Faculty Recognition


  • Funding is used for faculty prizes/awards, fellowships, professorships, chairs, and deanships
  • Currently, funding hovers at around $18.3 million 
  • The 2027 target for funding is $21.6 million

Annual Increase in Research Expenditures

2027 TARGET = 5%

  • Annual increase in research expenditures as of 2022 is 3%
  • Target is based on NSF HERD data and will be re-calculated annually based on rolling 3-year average of UI Peer Group