Congress has agreed to increase funding for two programs that help small businesses translate scientific discoveries into commercial ventures. The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs would receive a larger share of federal research dollars under the bicameral compromise.

Currently, the programs are funded by the 11 federal agencies that spend more than $100 million a year on research. The SBIR receives 2.5 percent of each agency’s research budget; STTR receives 0.3 percent. The new deal would increase those allocations to 3.2 percent and 0.45 percent, respectively, for the next six years.

Some members of the research community are unhappy about the reauthorization because they worry it will reduce the funding available for research.


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