US Congress Renews Small Business RD Programs with Stricter Requirements
  • 2023-05-04
  • Entrepreneurship Research Center on G20 Economies
  • Edit
  • Just before the cross-agency Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs were set to expire at the end of fiscal year 2022, Congress authorized them for another three years through the SBIR and STTR Extension Act. It also took the opportunity to add new conditions on entities that receive R&D grants from the programs.

    Although SBIR and STTR are popular in Congress, the programs have been criticized for supporting companies that regularly receive SBIR grants but have a poor track record in commercializing technologies or spinning off new companies.

    The enacted legislation was a last-minute compromise between House and Senate negotiators that includes tougher commercialization standards for serial awardees and stringent requirements to disclose connections to foreign countries. The SBIR and STTR Extension Act seeks to raise the minimum performance benchmarks for firms that receive multiple Phase I or Phase II awards. Phase I supports six-to-twelve month feasibility studies of a technology’s commercialization potential with funding from $50,000 up to $295,000, depending on the project and funding agency. Standard Phase II awards are about $750,000, but can reach up to $1.9 million over two years for further development and demonstration of a technology, including prototyping, testing, and market research.

    Created in 1982, SBIR provides R&D grants to small businesses and is administered by 11 federal agencies with annual extramural R&D budgets over $100 million. These agencies are required to commit 3.2% of their extramural funding to the program. Companies receiving large numbers of initial Phase I awards are currently screened based on their success in transitioning into follow-on Phase II awards. Awardees with large numbers of Phase II grants are screened based on their sales and attraction of private investment. The legislation also mandates a Government Accountability Office study of businesses that have won more than 50 Phase II awards to assess factors such as their impact on the program, their ability to commercialize technology, and their ability to produce technologies that meet agency needs. The study will also examine the effectiveness of the modified performance standards.

  • Partners

  • Global Health Innovation Center (GHIC)
  • World Intelligent Incubation Network (WIIN)
  • National University of Singapore
  • Canada-China Institute For Business & Development
  • TusPark Research Institute for Innovation
  • Cross-strait Tsinghua Research Institute
  • Tsinghua X-Lab

  • Copyright©2019 Entrepreneurship Research Center on G20 Economies      Support: Eteda Technology Company