IonE Yields $20 to $1 on University's Investment

Contact: Todd Reubold, Institute on the Environment, (612) 624-6140

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (3/1/2011) – During these difficult financial times, the Institute on the Environment wants to share with you, so you can share with others, how investments in the IonE bring tremendous financial benefit to the University at the same time they advance the search for solutions to difficult global challenges.

Since IonE began as a campus-wide strategic initiative in the 2008 fiscal year, we have invested in three main areas:

  • Incubating innovative research around renewable energy and the environment through the Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment (IREE), which is funded by the State of Minnesota's Renewable Development Fund with contributions from Xcel Energy ratepayers.
  • Catalyzing new research & engagement programs through our IonE Discovery Grants.
  • Accelerating the development of promising interdisciplinary scholars through our IonE Resident Fellows program and Global Environmental Leadership Fellows postdoc program, and collaboration with the Graduate School in the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellows program.

Thanks to the hard work of University of Minnesota faculty, staff and students, the University has seen an amazing return on these initial investments.

In the past three fiscal years, IonE investment of $6.64 million of University funds and another $13.19 million in IREE pass-through funds from the State of Minnesota's Renewal Development Fund has leveraged more than $134 million in federal, private, foundation and corporate funding to the University.

That's an amazing return of roughly $20 for every $1 in University funds invested so far.

All of this funding (including indirect costs) is going straight to the units that are doing the work, thus providing tremendous benefit across the University.

In summary, investments through IonE are having a major, transformative impact on the University community by dramatically boosting its ability to capture external funds for research, education and engagement. We believe this investment will pay off even more in the future, as the interdisciplinary bridges we have been building become even stronger.

Looking ahead, as our partnerships within and beyond the University grow, we anticipate continuing to leverage all investments to provide significant returns, both financial and environmental, to the University, to Minnesota and to the world.

Jon Foley, Director
Institute on the Environment