Sunday, July 15, 2012

NSF Seeks Small Tech Companies

NSF’s Partnerships for Innovation (PFI) program wants to support not only academic institutions but also small technology-based businesses in order to move engineering-based research discoveries into the market place at a faster pace.

NSF’s Directorate for Engineering posted a notice July 5th inviting requests for funding under the PFI program for their solicitation “Partnerships for Innovation: Building Innovation Capacity”. The objective is to establish partnerships between academic research teams and small technology-based businesses in order to translate discoveries into technical and/or economic competencies. The funding will provide support to academic institutions that partner with at least two small technology-based businesses that are not in direct competition with each other.  

The primary aim is to:

  • Build the innovation capacity of individual participants from academia and from business
  • Increase the viability of small business concerns
  • Develop the next-generation workforce by providing opportunities for students at different levels to effectively participate in innovative projects

Universities, colleges, and small technology-based business are eligible to apply for the funding but small technology companies must have one team member with entrepreneurial and business experience.

Anticipated funding of $8,000,000 will be made for thirteen awards dependent on anticipated funding and the quality of proposals received. Awards may be made for up to $600,000. A Letter of Intent is due September 26, 2012 with the full proposal due December 12, 2012.

Go to or to to view the solicitation.  The contact is Sara B. Nerlove, Program Director at (703) 292-7077 or email