Small businesses have increasingly been recognized as a source of innovation, and one way in which the Federal government encourages such innovation is through the Small Business Innovation Research program. SBIR sets aside 2.5 percent of federal agencies' R&D budgets for R&D grants to small business. Although the program's budget was nearly $1.2 billion in 1998, SBIR has been subject to relatively little outside review. As part of the STEP's ongoing project on Government-Industry Partnerships, the Board convened policymakers, academic researchers, and representatives from small business to discuss the program's history and rationale, review existing research, and identify areas for further research and program improvements.
National Research Council. The Small Business Innovation Research Program: Challenges and Opportunities. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 1999.
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