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UMass Small Business Innovation Research Center

The UMass Small Business Innovation Research Center of Excellence is located in the UMass Lowell Research Institute. It offers access to an inner circle of SBIR process experts, as well as in-reach to scientists at UMass (all campuses) who can enhance your proposing team with their cutting-edge research. We help mentor and guide your business through the SBIR process. In addition we have 50/50 matching grants from the DoD Office of Economic Adjustment (DoD OEA). Minimum defense business threshold requirements must be met in order to qualify.

Some open and pending Small Business Innovation Research solicitations: 

  • Release 2 for both DOD and DARPA are now closed.
  • Department of Energy (pre-release July 17) - Letter of intent due Sept. 3., proposals due Oct. 19 
  • Next NIH due date is September 5.

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)

The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program is a competitive program that encourages domestic small businesses to engage in Federal Research and Development that has the potential for commercialization. Phase I grants are typically proof-of-concept studies awarded at $150-$200k and lasting 6-9 months. Phase II grants are on the order of $1M and the period of performance is typically 2 years. By the end of Phase II, the product should be ready for sale. Phase III programs are acquisition programs. ..."Americas Seed Fund" supports entrepreneurs and national research and development needs. Never done one before? Great! The government wants new companies to participate.

Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)

Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) is another program that expands funding opportunities in the federal innovation research and development (R&D) arena. These create joint-venture opportunities for small businesses and nonprofit research institutions (like UMass) in Phase I and Phase II research. The overall finding amounts, period-of-performance, and proposal process is nearly identical to SBIRs. A small company must lead the effort and serve a principal investigator. STTRs accelerate the commercialization of R&D from universities and national labs.


Stacy Swider has spent her career in industry and has won, executed, and commercialized from multiple SBIR/STTR awards. You may email her directly at: