Interest: This paper evaluates public support of private-sector research and development (R&D)
through the Department of Defense's (DoD) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)
Program. Based on alternative evaluation methods applicable to survey data and case studies, we
conclude that there is ample evidence that the DoD's SBIR Program is stimulating R&D as well
as efforts to commercialize that would not otherwise have taken place. Further, the evidence
shows the SBIR R&D does lead to commercialization
Interest: Some scientists are not pleased with proposed new “broader impact” requirements that may be added to the National Science Foundation’s grant review process. At a hearing on Tuesday (July 26) before the House of Representatives Subcommittee on Research and Science Education, scientists debated the proposed new criteria, which include nine “national goals” that NSF projects should “collectively” advance, including increased economic competitiveness and improved K-12 science education.
Interest: NSF's Innovation Corps, or I-Corps, aims to offer 100 grants a year at $50,000 each. But the money isn't the main point of the project. The key is to put NSF-funded scientists together with mentors and entrepreneurs to turn their ideas into marketable ventures. It sounds like a new role for a federal agency that focuses on research rather than revenue, but the agency's director contends that I-Corps is right in line with NSF's mission.
Interest: Government bureaucracies and start-ups are usually two things that don’t mix well together, but the National Science Foundation is looking to change that with a $10 million grant for an start-up education program intended to teach the nation’s top scientists and engineers how to become entrepreneurs.
The Innovation Corps program — which starts in September at Stanford University –will give $50,000 to 100 different teams (3 or more people per team) every year to go through an intensive entrepreneurial education class.
Interest: The National Science Foundation (NSF) announced a new effort to help develop scientific and engineering discoveries into useful technologies, products and processes.
The NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps) program, a public-private partnership, will connect NSF-funded scientific research with the technological, entrepreneurial and business communities to help create a stronger national ecosystem for innovation that couples scientific discovery with technology development and societal needs.
Interest: ALL right, class, here’s your homework assignment: Devise an app. Get people to use it. Repeat. That was the task for some Stanford students in the fall of 2007, in what became known here as the “Facebook Class.”
Interest: An ocean of research producing treatments by the drop. Indeed, in recent decades, one of the most sobering realities in the field of biomedical research has been the fact that, despite significant increases in funding — as well as extraordinary advances in things like genomics, computerized molecular modeling, and drug screening and synthesization — the number of new treatments for illnesses that make it to market each year has flatlined (pdf) at historically low levels.
Interest: Following in the footsteps of revolutionaries like Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, who built the first Apple computer in Jobs's garage, and Sergey Brin and Larry Page, who invented Google in a friend's garage, biohackers are attempting bold feats of genetic engineering, drug development, and biotech research in makeshift home laboratories.
Interest: For many technology startups, the period when they try to secure investments before their research has reached the viable product stage is known as the "Valley of Death." Now the University System of Maryland is partnering with the Army Research Laboratory to provide financing to bridge this stage.
Interest: While some sectors of Maryland's economy struggle to shake free of the Great Recession, the biotechnology parks adjacent to Baltimore's two top teaching hospitals stubbornly continue to add laboratories, offices and — most importantly for the city — jobs.
Interest: U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke today announced the winners of the i6 Challenge, a new $12 million innovation competition led by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA), in partnership with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation (NSF). Locke made the announcement during his keynote remarks at an event on regional innovation clusters co-hosted by The Brookings Institution.
Interest: OSTP has been working with Federal agencies and the research community to identify concrete steps that the Administration can take to promote U.S. leadership in robotics. As part of this effort, five agencies teamed up to issue a joint solicitation for small business research for Robotics Technology Development and Deployment (RTD2). Small businesses can apply for research funding for a wide range of topics.
Interest: Back in July the government identified robots as one of the R&D priorities for the 2012 budget (about a decade behind the rest of us). Now there's a research funding round to aid small business robotic's efforts, to build robot gear DARPA can't manage.
Interest: The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program will undergo a series of improvements in the coming months to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of the overall program. Together, these improvements will represent a new and improved SBIR, or as we are calling it, "SBIR 2.0"
SBIR 2.0 will make the program more entrepreneur-friendly to ensure entrepreneurs have the support they need to do what they do best - innovate and create jobs. By leveraging best practices among the 11 agencies
Interest: Organizers of the planned Minnesota Science Park officially unveiled plans for the 32-acre, one million-square-foot private research park adjacent to the University of Minnesota’s Biomedical Discovery District.
Interest: U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced today the selection of five projects to build and strengthen "innovation ecosystems" that will accelerate the movement of cutting-edge energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies from university laboratories into the market. This is the first time the Department is funding this type of university-based commercialization effort. The ecosystems will foster collaborative environments, bringing together key players from universities, the private sector, the federal government and Department of Energy National Laboratories to identify and develop new clean energy technologies and help them succeed in the marketplace. The projects will receive a total of $5.3 million in federal funding over three years, which will be leveraged with grantee investments to support $9 million in total projects.
Interest: To accelerate the process of innovation, NSF is undertaking two related, new activities. The first will encourage the translation of the numerous, technologically-promising, fundamental discoveries made by NSF researchers, while drawing upon and building the entrepreneurial spirit of the researchers and students. The second activity will foster connections between an existing NSF innovation research alliance (including consortia such as Engineering Research Centers (ERC), Industry University Cooperative Research Centers (I/UCRC), Partnerships for Innovation (PFI), Science and Technology Centers (STC), Nanoscale Science and Engineering Centers (NSEC), Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers (MRSEC) grantees) and other institutions, whose complementary focus will spur the development of discoveries into innovative technologies through collaboration. Both of these activities are designed to strengthen the U.S. innovation ecosystem.
Interest: Fostering innovation and entrepreneurship is one of President Obama’s top priorities. His national innovation strategy identifies three critical roles for government: investing in the building blocks of long-term economic growth, such as research and human capital; creating the right environment to encourage private sector investment; and harnessing innovation to address national priorities such as clean energy and a more efficient healthcare system.