How much money is really spent on R&D in the U.S., and where’s it all going? Hard to say exactly, but a wonky study just churned out by the California government does shed some light. Their estimate: $220 billion a year, 20 percent of it in California.
California also happens to be the biggest single recipient of federal research grants: $50 billion between 1993 and 1999. Of that total, 58% went to businesses, 41% to universities.
They break it down by counties, and show that — now this is really interesting — Los Angeles is the biggest recipient of federal research money, San Diego is #2, and Santa Clara is #3.