University research and technology ecosystem

Wayne State University, founded in 1868, is a nationally recognized public, urban research university in Detroit. Wayne State is Michigan's only urban research university, and is known internationally for its contributions to the sciences. Wayne State University holds the highest Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching designations in both research and community engagement.

Extramural research funding to the university totaled $352.6M in FY2023 with support from a variety of funding sources including corporate entities, foundations and federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation and the Department of Defense.

Wayne State University's campus, located in the Cultural Center and Historic District in the heart of Detroit's Midtown neighborhood, encompasses approximately 200 acres. The university enrolls nearly 28,000 students, making it the third largest among Michigan's 15 public universities and one of the 50 largest in the nation. 

The university's comprehensive academic offerings are divided among 13 schools and colleges: Mike Illitch School of Business, the College of Education, the College of Engineering, the College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts, the Graduate School, the Law School; the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the School of Library and Information Science as well as a number of programs in the Health Sciences including the Institute of Gerontology, the Merrill Palmer Skillman Institute for Child and Family Development,  the School of Medicine, the College of Nursing, the Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences and the School of Social Work.


  • In 2015, Wayne State University opened new $93 million Integrative Biosciences Center (IBio) with thematic foci in multiple areas including environmental sciences, bio and systems engineering, heart disease, metabolic diseases (diabetes, obesity) and brain and biobehavioral health, with plans to recruit 30 new faculty members for research and development programs in integrative biosciences. IBio Includes space dedicated to expanding partnerships with Henry Ford Hospital System.
  • Home to one of the 45 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancers centers in the United States, the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute.
  • Establishment of a joint laboratory with Fudan University in Shanghai, China that is focused on stem cell biology and treatment of a wide range of cancers. Okayama University has established a laboratory at the new IBio Center at Wayne State University that also focuses on stem cell technology and cancer therapeutics.
  • Establishment and centralized operational management of a number of enabling instrumentation cores and resources (advanced instrumentation labs) for industry access.
  • The university has made substantial investments in its technology transfer and commercialization initiatives with current info on technologies and engagement platforms  and TechTown. This investment includes the expansion of the Wayne State University technology incubator TechTown facility, which is an urban research and technology business park located adjacent to IBio in the north section of the Wayne State University campus.
  • Establishment of the $25M James and Patricia Anderson Engineering Ventures Institute.
  • Member of the University Research Corridor, an alliance of Michigan's three research institutions (Wayne State University, University of Michigan and Michigan State University.) The University Research Corridor innovation cluster is ranked second upon such clusters on a national level (Innovation Power Rankings).