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Multiple images of researchers working in the field. The first image shows two student researchers, looking at a laptop by a stream in their high boots and weighters. The second image is a close up shot of a student researcher looking at creatures in glass containers. The third image shows two professors, wearing safety glasses, about to pour liquid nitrogen. The fourth image shows a researcher in the lab. The fifth image shows a group of researchers looking at foliage in plastic bags. The sixth image shows two researchers taking images for the library archive, one is standing on a stool while the other holds books open.

Serving North Carolina, Changing the World

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is the 12th largest research university in the United States, ranking 11th in the nation for federal research expenditures. More than 150 Carolina faculty are members of the National Academies and other prestigious learned societies.

Carolina houses five major health affairs schools (Medicine, Public Health, Pharmacy, Dentistry and Nursing) on our main campus, as well as our College of Arts & Sciences, a statewide health care system with five on-campus hospitals, and 46 research centers and institutes. Proximity and passion create a highly collaborative culture among scientists of all disciplines, which drives our $1.36 billion in annual research activity.

Strategic Research Priorities

By fostering and supporting collaborative, interdisciplinary teams, UNC Research is accelerating new discoveries and solutions to emerging challenges in these areas:



Discovering the biology and diseases of the nervous system and drivers of human behavior.



Improving lives through cancer research and advancing cancer prevention, detection, treatment and health practice.


Data Science

Developing and applying big data tools to solve scientific and societal problems.



The study of natural systems, global environmental change, resilience, and health.


Infectious Disease

Discover cures and therapies and pioneer strategies that will combat the spread of infectious disease and address current and rapidly evolving threats to public health


Opportunity, Well-Being, and Culture

Exploring how opportunities shape success and well-being over a person’s lifetime and across societies; and humanities as a lens for understanding our world.


Precision Health and Society

Tailoring health care practice, delivery and therapeutics to unique individual circumstances, using factors from genetics to social and environmental influences.

Research Funding Initiatives and Award Programs

The Vice Chancellor for Research’s funding Initiatives and award programs accelerate the work of UNC researchers with diverse perspectives to develop solutions to scientific challenges, promote creative pursuits, and benefit North Carolina and the world. Through these initiatives, we seek to build a culture of collaboration that promotes discovery and curiosity, supports creative inventions, and recognizes and rewards exceptional performance.

Creativity Hubs logo.
UNC Idea Grants
Arts and Humanities Research Grants
ORD Publications Grants