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BARD 40 Year Review


4.4 Sources of Funding for BARD Activities

The funds for supporting BARD activities, approximately $8 million annually, are generated by two sources that are contributed in equal parts by the governments of the US and Israel: interest on a fixed $110 million endowment, and an annual direct supplement to the research budget of each country.  

The main source of BARD's research budget (Figure 2) is the interest on the endowment fund. This fund was set up within the framework of the original agreement between the two governments, each of which endowed $40 million, creating a total fund of $80 million. With a fixed annual interest of 7%, paid quarterly in arrears, the endowment fund generates an annual $5.6 million.

The full table of approved budgets throughout 40 years can be found in Appendix B.

Figure 1: Submitted and Approved Proposals 1979-2018

The endowment fund was enhanced in 1984 by $30 million, contributed in equal parts by both countries. The formula for calculating the interest on this amount is based on the LIBOR (London Interbank Offering Rate) index and is paid semiannually. Since 1984, this interest rate has fluctuated between 4.5% and 10.5% per annum. In 2018, the interest was 5% a year, yielding $1.5 million.

Figure 3: The Purchasing Power of the US Dollar (1979-2018)

The devaluation of currency has direct impact on the value of research grants, as the sum awarded per research grant has not been significantly increased over the years (Figure 3). Similar trends in currency value have been observed in both countries, where USD purchasing power has declined by 70% over 40 years. The percentage of the purchasing power of the dollar is calculated starting in 1979.