Research Takes Cents

Research!America's signature Research Takes Cents compare selected consumer spending to the costs associated with conducting research. Research Takes Cents examples are easy to drop into a conversation, and they are particularly effective when used in presentations with images.

Examples:

General Topics

Alcohol

The $219.5 billion Americans spent on alcoholic beverages in 2016 could fund all NIH-sponsored research on alcoholism, alcohol use and health, and liver diseases for the next 196 years.

Sources: Statista, NIH

Athletes

The combined salaries of the top ten highest-paid athletes in 2016 totaled more than $635 million - enough to fund all NIH-sponsored head and spine injury research for more than 3 years.

Sources: Forbes, NIH

 

Bathing Suits

Annual U.S. spending on women’s two-piece bathing suits is $8 billion, which could fund the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s breast and cervical cancer prevention and control program for 40 years.

Sources: Statistic Brain , CDC 

Coffee

The U.S. spent 5.18 billion on coffee in 2016, which could fund all NIH-sponsored research on sleep for 16.5 years.

Sources: Statista, NIH

 

Cosmetic Surgery

In 2016, Americans spent $16.4 billion on elective cosmetic surgeries, which could fund the National Institute on Aging for 13 years.

Sources: ASPS, NIA

 

Disney Parks

Disney’s U.S. theme parks revenues in 2016 were estimated to be $13.3 billion, which is almost double the budget for the National Science Foundation for all research and related activities in FY 16. 

Sources: The Walt Disney Company, NSF 

Electronics

The highest valued American company, Apple, is estimated at $752 billion – enough money to fund all NIH-sponsored cancer research for 134.5 years.

Sources: Forbes, NIH

 

Fast Food

Americans spent $206.3 billion on fast food in 2016, which could fund all NIH cardiovascular and obesity-related research for 67 years.

Sources: Statista, NIH

Football

In 2016, the top five most valuable teams in the National Football League are worth an estimated $16.65 billion, or about 2.6 times the amount of funding that NIH-sponsored Neuroscience research received that year.

Sources: Forbes, NIH

 

Home Entertainment

Americans spent $18.3 billion on home entertainment in 2016, an amount that could fund the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communications Disorders for 44 years.

Sources: DEG, NIDCD

 

Ice Cream

In 2016, consumer spending on ice cream and other frozen desserts was estimated to be $13.5 billion – more than 8 times the total funding for NIH-sponsored nutrition research in the U.S. in FY16.

Sources: Statista, NIH

Lotteries

State lotteries generated $80.55 billion in sales in 2016, which could fund all of the NIH-sponsored gene therapy research for 271 years.

Sources: Statista, NIH

Movies

In 2016, the U.S. domestic box office earned a record $11.37 billion, enough to fund the NIH-sponsored research for eye disease and vision disorders for 13.5 years.

 Sources: Box Office Mojo, NIH

 

Pizza

In 2016, Americans spent an estimated $45 billion on pizza, enough to fund the NIH-sponsored research on digestive diseases for over 25.5 years.

Sources: IBIS World, NIH

Restaurants

Americans spend $783 billion annually at restaurants. This could fund the FDA, the CDC, the NIH, and the NSF for a little over 15 years. 

Sources: Toast, CDC, FDAAmerican Association for the Advancement of Science

Super Bowl

In 2016, Americans spent $15.5 billion on Super Bowl-related purchases, which could fund the Food and Drug Administration for 6 years.

Sources: Statista, FDA

Tobacco

In 2016, US tobacco companies grossed $117 billion in revenue – enough to fund NIH-sponsored research on lung cancer for more than 353 years.

Sources: Wall Street Journal, NIH

 

Video Games

The US video, mobile, and digital game industry generated $23.98 billion in 2016, enough to fund all of the NIH-sponsored research on depression, suicide, and youth violence for more than 45.6 years.

 

Sources: Statista, NIH

 

Women's Clothes

The $42 billion Americans spent in 2016 on women’s clothes could fund all of the NIH-sponsored research for women’s health for more than 9 years.

Sources: IBIS World, NIH

 

Seasonal

4th of July

In 2016, Americans expected to spend an estimated $6.77 billion on food for the Fourth of July. This could have funded NIH foodborne illness research more than 58 years.

Sources: WalletHub, NIH

Back to School

In 2016, Americans spent $75.8 billion for back-to-school and college shopping, which could fund the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for almost 10.5 years.

Sources: National Retail Federation, CDC

Black Friday

In 2015, Americans spent a total of $16.5 billion on Thanksgiving and Black Friday sales – enough to fund the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality for 60 years.

Sources: Fortune, ShopperTrak, HHS

Father's Day

In 2016, Americans spent $14.3 billion on gifts for Father’s Day, which could fund all NIH-sponsored prostate and colorectal cancer research for 27 years.

Sources: National Retail Federation, NIH

 

Halloween

Americans spent $8.4 billion on Halloween in 2016, enough to fund the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality for 17.5 years!

Sources: National Retail Federation, AHRQ

 

Mother's Day

In 2016, Americans spent $21.4 billion on Mother’s Day, enough money to fund rare diseases research at NIH for 5 years.

Sources: National Retail Federation, NIH

St. Patrick's Day

In 2016, Americans spent $4.4 billion for St. Patrick’s Day, enough to fund the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s research on patient safety for 58 years.

Sources: National Retail Federation, AHRQ 

 

 

Summer Camp

Last summer, the U.S. spent more than $3 billion on summer camp for children – which could fund the NIH’s pediatric research program for almost 8 years.

Sources: IBIS World, NIH

 

Summer Vacation

Americans spent $89.9 billion on summer vacation in 2016, enough money to fund The Fogarty International Center for global health research for more than 1,293.5 years.

Sources: Allianz Travel Insurance, FIC

Thanksgiving

In 2016, the US spent an estimated $2.9 billion on food for Thanksgiving dinner. This amount could fund food safety monitoring activities at the Food and Drug Administration for 3 years.

Sources: Statistic Brain, FDA

 

Valentine's Day

In 2016, Americans spent $19.7 billion on Valentine’s Day – which could fund NIH-sponsored research on heart disease for 11.5 years.

Sources: National Retail Federation, NIH

 

Winter Weather

Americans spent enough money on snowplow services (14 billion) in 2016 to fund all NIH-sponsored research on Pneumonia and Influenza for almost 37 years.

Sources: IBIS, NIH

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Without research, there is no hope.
The Honorable Paul G. Rogers