One of the key factor in the resume of an academic is the amount of research funds he was able to secure.

Most research funds go towards human resources, for example, postdoc fellows and PhD students. In my resume, I write the total funds I have received. A significant part of these funds is paid to my research fellows.

However, sometimes my institution hires staff for me. For instance, if my university gives me credit to hire postdoc fellows for my research, this is also a kind of grant that I have earned, but it is not a value to be summed (to estimate total funds I've secured).


  • The list of funds we secured are normally external funds provided by funding agencies. How do you calculate internal funds granted to you?
  • If your research institution grants you special access (as a reward to your achievements) to human resources or facilities, but no money is transferred, how do you estimate the total fund granted to you? And is it appropriate to do so?

Generally, what really only matters are awards and grants you receive through a competitive process. (Everything else is really only regular internal support of research.) If this is the case, whether it is monetary or through in-kind contributions is not really all that important. So I would say something like this in my CV:

  • Innovation Award XY-2015-05 from the College of Science, University of ABC; the award consisted of in-kind salary contributions to support a lab technician for my lab for 12 months. Innovation Awards are awards through a competitive process within the College of Science following a review of a peer committee.

In a case like this, it is not necessary to attach a dollar/pound/Deutschmark amount to it -- people can figure it out. The same is the case if you get access to expensive equipment beyond what one would ordinarily get. For example, getting one million CPU hours on a university supercomputing center's machine is not something special and there is no need to list it. Getting 100 million CPU hours on a state or national facility is special and would be worth listing. (Because 1 CPU hour is valued at around 10 US-cents these days.)

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I agree with Wolfgang in that whether the funding is internal or external will not make very much of a difference, as long as the process is competitive.

However, external funding will usually carry greater prestige, earned or not, as there may be a perception that internal funding may be less competitive and more prone to "I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine". So I'd probably separate external and internal funding into two sections.

And I'd always try to put at least a rough monetary amount to any funds or support received. Why? Like it or not, people will need to summarize your CV in a few key figures to compare it to other people's CVs, and total funds acquired is one of these figures. Make it easy for the person reading your CV to calculate this total. Don't force him to open a spreadsheet and fill in assumptions about the monetary value of resources your university granted you.

For support staff, just ask HR about the rough fully loaded cost of this person. (The exact number may be confidential, since it ties into the specific person's salary, but your university will probably have some bookkeeping rule of thumb they use. For computing cycles, use similar estimates.

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