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2014-2015 IACC ASD Research Portfolio Analysis Report Provides ASD Research Funding Trends Over Last 8 Years

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The Office of Autism Research Coordination (OARC) has released The 2014-2015 IACC ASD Research Portfolio Analysis Report which represents the eighth year of data collected and the sixth comprehensive report of U.S. ASD research funding across both the Federal and private sectors. It is also the last analysis that will measure research progress against the objectives from the 2011 IACC Strategic Plan. The Portfolio Analysis Reports align data on individual research-related projects with objectives in the IACC Strategic Plan, providing an accounting of how much funding has gone toward support of projects related to Strategic Plan objectives and highlighting trends. This information has been used to help the IACC in their efforts to monitor ASD research efforts and track progress made each year toward achievement of objectives. Overall, funding for ASD research among both Federal and private funders totaled $309.9 million and spanned 1,441 projects in 2014 and reached $342.6 million covering 1,410 projects in 2015. With eight years of ASD research funding data available, it was possible to continue analyzing funding trends on the long-term progress of the field of ASD research over the period from 2008-2015. Over the eight years, autism research showed a general upward trend in funding, increasing by 35% since 2008.

One of the key aims of the Portfolio Analysis Report is to evaluate the progress made in addressing the research priorities as outlined in the Strategic Plan objectives. In 2015, significant progress was made toward completing the objectives in the 2011 Strategic Plan, with 97% (76 objectives) of the 78 objectives either partially or fully completed. Considering the period from 2008-2015, only 3% (2 objectives) of the 2011 Strategic Plan objectives were not active at any point across this eight-year window. This indicates that the vast majority of priority areas identified in the Strategic Plan objectives were deemed by Federal and private research funders to be worthy of investment and were implemented either partially or fully.

While this is the last portfolio analysis using the Strategic Plan objectives developed in 2011, in the next IACC Strategic Plan (2016-2017), the Committee will put forward objectives and budget recommendations to encourage funders to direct investment toward a new set of research priorities that reflect the most pressing needs of the autism community. Future portfolio analyses using the 2016-2017 IACC Strategic Plan’s new objectives will continue to track progress and serve as a resource for the Committee, funders, and the broader ASD community to identify and address knowledge gaps, recognize emerging trends and new opportunities, and foster research that will have a positive impact address the needs of families and individuals affected by ASD.


The IACC is a Federal advisory committee that was created by Congress in an effort to accelerate progress in ASD research and services. The IACC works to improve coordination and communication across the Federal government and work in partnership with the autism community. The Committee is composed of officials from many different Federal agencies involved in autism research and services, as well as adults on the autism spectrum, parents and family members of individuals on the autism spectrum, advocates, researchers, providers, and other public stakeholders. The documents and recommendations produced by the IACC reflect the views of the Committee as an independent advisory body and the expertise of the members of the Committee, but do not represent the views, official statements, policies or positions of the Federal government. For more information on the IACC, please visit:

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