Scholarship and Research

The scope of research carried out by Princeton’s faculty, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, undergraduate students and professional researchers ranges from robust engagement with the major challenges of our time — energy, the environment, health, security — to probing the origin of the universe. Our researchers expand the confines of the known and strive to find solutions to societal challenges through creative, systematic and fact-based inquiry.

External sources funded 1,637 separate awards in 2021–22 (not including the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory). There were 938 sponsored awards in the natural sciences, 520 in engineering and applied science, 161 in the humanities and social sciences, and 18 in non-academic areas. Expenditures for these awards totaled $279.3 million — 78.3% from government and 21.7% from foundations, corporations and other sources. Including PPPL, the University expended approximately $438.8 million in 2021 –22 in research funding from external sources.

Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

For more than seven decades, the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) has been an innovation and discovery leader in plasma and fusion science and engineering. PPPL’s mission is developing the scientific knowledge and advanced engineering to enable fusion to power the U.S. and the world; advancing the science of nanoscale fabrication and sustainable manufacturing for technologies of tomorrow; and furthering the scientific understanding of the plasma universe from laboratory to astrophysical scales. PPPL is a key partner of the U.S. effort to build ITER, the international fusion experiment under construction in France, and is working with both public and private entities to bring a U.S. fusion pilot plant into operation by midcentury. Underlying all its endeavors is the call to educate and inspire future generations for the national interest. The laboratory, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and located on the James Forrestal Campus, has more than 600 employees, is planning an expansive new center of laboratories and offices, and had a 2021 federal fiscal year budget of approximately $130 million.

Academic Resources

The Library

The Princeton University Library Library Library is one of the world’s foremost research libraries. A hub of activity for exploration and discovery, it is continually evolving and enhancing its contribution to the Princeton research, teaching and learning experience. The Library actively supports today’s researchers through newly designed workspaces, in-depth expertise, state-of-the-art technology, and ever-increasing access to its extraordinary physical and electronic collections. Its extensive holdings range from an Egyptian Book of the Dead (circa 1250 BCE), to the papers of Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison, to recently published scholarly works. The Library has a campus-wide presence in nine locations, including the main library, the Harvey S. Firestone Memorial Library.

The Art Museum

With a collecting history that extends back to 1755, the Princeton University Art Museum is one of the leading university art museums in the world. Committed to advancing Princeton’s teaching and research missions, the museum has grown its collections to over 113,000 works of art ranging from ancient to contemporary and spanning the globe.

The main museum building is closed for construction of a new museum, designed by architect Sir David Adjaye and anticipated to open in late 2024. During construction, students and faculty continue to enjoy rich in-person classroom experiences with the collections, as well as two downtown galleries, Art on Hulfish and [email protected], featuring exhibitions of contemporary art. In addition, the museum offers robust live programs and rich online resources.