And not just academia (administrators, faculty, postdocs/grad students) is beholden to it. There is also a huge related industry (annual sales in the billions of dollars) led by the lab equipment suppliers. So if you are one such company, how do you go about getting some of that stimulus money?
You trawl the top-ranked academic journals and send out unsolicited advertising emails to the authors of recent publications.
Dear Dr. takchek,
I read your paper in (kick-ass high impact factor in its subfield journal), and I wanted to send you a short note on recent technology that may be of interest.
We have been working with a number of research leaders in Nanomedicine and nano-drug delivery research looking to quantify nanoparticles in live cells. This effort led to the development of a novel system called "complicated-sounding name that only specialists in the sub-field understand (with acronym)"...Insert the advantages and coolness of this new technology...and must end with your targeted audience in mind...This technology has been specifically designed for use in nanomedicine, nanotox and related nanoscale investigations.
We are actively involved in supporting funding and grant submittals for the NEW (April 2009) Obama funding at NIH and NSF. If you are considering applying for some of the NEW $8.2 billion of grants for equipment PLEASE let us know. We can help!
On the other hand:
NIH received ~21,000 applications for the stimulus funds. They expected 1,500 and predicted 200 Challenge Awards will be offered. So the rejection rate could reach 99%. (Science, 2009, 324, 5925, pp. 318 - 319)