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DOE seeking manufacturing productivity proposals, feedback on barriers to funding

June 17, 2021

The U.S. Department of Energy is seeking public feedback on the current barriers and actions needed to make its funding opportunities and innovation and entrepreneurship activities more inclusive, just and equitable, and, in a separate effort, it is seeking input on improving productivity and efficiency of the manufacturing sector through a $4.8 million request for proposals.

The Biden administration has set ambitious climate change goals, including reaching net zero emissions by no later than 2050, and anticipates accelerating the deployment of climate and energy technologies through innovative solutions, with environmental and climate justice as key considerations. In announcing the request for information (RFI), officials at DOE said the department is committed to developing funding opportunities that diversify the applicant pool and reach more first-time applicants, and is particularly interested in hearing from environmental justice organizations; community-based organizations; state, local, and tribal governments; entrepreneurs; small businesses; incubators and accelerators; and, researchers and innovators who experience location-based difficulties in accessing resources. 

Based on the responses to the RFI, DOE may release funding opportunities, assistance for grant application support services, incubation and acceleration services for entrepreneurship, and/or develop other measures to support a just and inclusive innovation ecosystem. Responses are due by Aug. 6 and more information is available here.

Also, DOE in partnership with the Clean Energy Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute (CESMII), announced a $4.8 million request for proposals (RFP) to develop emerging technologies for the manufacturing sector, including advanced sensors, cloud-based computing, advanced modeling and simulation, and artificial intelligence. The RFP focuses on addressing challenges in sensing, control, analytics and predictive modeling technologies. The RFP also solicits ideas for college and university outreach and training strategies that will expand and diversify the clean-manufacturing workforce.

Proposal submissions are due by Aug. 3, and the request for proposals can be found here.

doe, clean energy, cleantech, inclusion, equity