December 23, 2016

How well the SBIR & STTR (Small Business Innovation Research & Small Business Technology Transfer Programs) are fulfilling their U.S. congressionally mandated goals

SBIR & STTR programs: Major Research Study from CATAAlliance on Vimeo.

In this 434 page research paper (pdf format) authored by the National Academy of Science, readers will gain insights into how well the SBIR and STTR (Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs) are fulfilling their U.S. congressionally mandated goals.

The research will be of particular interest to executives wishing to access the SBIR and STTR programs, and to policy makers in Canada now examining how to best support innovation and entrepreneur success.

As part of its competitive innovation nation agenda, CATA is advocating for a Canadian SBIR, please see details and support at:



To receive a copy of this research, please request your password access by sending an email to CATA CEO John Reid at with your contact details.

Research Study Preface

Today’s knowledge economy is driven in large part by the nation’s capacity to innovate and to implement innovations in an agile, secure, and cost-effective manner. A defining feature of the U.S. economy is a high level of entrepreneurial activity. Entrepreneurs in the United States see opportunities and are willing and able to assume risk to bring new welfare-enhancing, wealth-generating technologies to the market. Yet, although discoveries in areas such as genomics, bioinformatics, energy, and nanotechnology present new opportunities, converting these discoveries into innovations for the market involves substantial challenges.

The American capacity for innovation can be strengthened by addressing the challenges faced by entrepreneurs to take innovations into markets. Public-private partnerships are one means to help entrepreneurs bring new ideas to market.

The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program is one of the largest examples of U.S. public-private partnerships. An underlying tenet of the program is that small businesses are a strong source of new ideas, and therefore economic growth, but that it is difficult to find financial support for these ideas in the early stages of their development and market implementation. The SBIR program was established in 1982 to encourage small businesses to develop new processes and products and to provide quality research and development in support of the U.S. government’s many missions. By involving qualified small businesses in the nation’s research and development (R&D) effort, SBIR grants stimulate innovative technologies to help federal agencies meet their specific functional needs in many areas, including energy, health, the environment, and national defense. The Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program was created in 1992 by the Small Business Research and Development Enhancement Act to expand joint venture opportunities for small businesses and nonprofit research institutions by requiring small business recipients to collaborate formally with a research institution.

This report provides an analysis of how well the SBIR and STTR programs at the Department of Energy are fulfilling their congressionally mandated goals…

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