Small Business Innovation Research Programs (SBIR)

The SBIR Program was established by Congress in 1982 to fund research and development (R&D) by small businesses of 500 or fewer employees.  The STTR Program was established in 1992 to fund cooperative R&D projects with small businesses and non-profit U.S. research institutions, such as universities. Eleven federal agencies participate in the SBIR program, of which five participate in the STTR Program (*).

Each agency administers its own program within guidelines established by Congress in the Small Business Act and by SBA in the STTR/SBIR Policy Directive.  These agencies designate R&D topics in their solicitations and accept proposals from small businesses. Awards are made on a competitive basis after proposal evaluation.  The Small Business Administration’s Office of Investment and Innovation and  SBIR/STTR Program website provide additional information regarding the SBIR/STTR programs. 

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