Texas Tech University

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program

The SBIR/STTR program provides funds for early-stage research and development at small U.S. businesses. Proposing entities are encouraged to take advantage of research expertise and facilities that may be available to them at colleges, universities, national laboratories and from other research providers. The PI must have the primary employment at a small business (primary employment is defined as 51% employed by the small business for the duration of the award).

Successful PIs will conduct Research and Development(R&D) on projects that:

Projects should have the following:

Mission of the program:

To promote technological innovation and economic growth through the investment of Federal research funds in small U.S. businesses.

Goals of the program:

History of the program:

The SBIR program started as a pilot program at NSF in the late 1970’s. Since then, three legislative acts have been passed to govern its existence and execution. Currently, the SBIR program is operating on a continuing resolution.

SBIR/STTR program description:

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)

Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)

Participating Agencies:

Program Basic Structure:

Phase I:

Phase II

Phase III

Every agency has its own deadlines. It also has a different review mechanism. Indirect costs plus fringe are limited to 150% of direct salaries and wages. This limitation may entail mandatory cost sharing by the organization. In such cases, it constitutes an exception to some agencies’ guidelines like the NSF’s policy which prohibit cost share

For more information on the program, please visit the official SBIR website: http://www.sbir.gov/.


National Science Foundation (NSF) website
Department of Commerce National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
SBIR website