• Join your peers at SSTI's 2024 Annual Conference!

    Join us December 10-12 in Arizona to connect with and learn from your peers working around the country to strengthen their regional innovation economies. Visit ssticonference.org for more information and to register today.

  • Become an SSTI Member

    As the most comprehensive resource available for those involved in technology-based economic development, SSTI offers the services that are needed to help build tech-based economies.  Learn more about membership...

  • Subscribe to the SSTI Weekly Digest

    Each week, the SSTI Weekly Digest delivers the latest breaking news and expert analysis of critical issues affecting the tech-based economic development community. Subscribe today!

NSF and EDA sign MOU to coordinate work on regional innovation programs

July 27, 2023

The "CHIPS and Science Act" authorizes both the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) to implement programs to enable regional technology development and economic and job growth through NSF Regional Innovation Engines (NSF Engines) and EDA Regional Technology and Innovation Hub (Tech Hubs) programs. To officially enable cooperation between the two agencies as they pursue these similar goals, NSF and EDA signed a memorandum of understanding MOU. The MOU allows for coordinating specific projects, programs, and facilities. The coordination may include research and education activities, facilities, centers, data infrastructure and outreach.

Ongoing areas of cooperation as well as future areas of potential cooperation could include:

  • Implementing pathways for sustained growth of regional innovation ecosystems.
  • Training and educating diverse technicians, researchers, practitioners, and entrepreneurs based on regional workforce needs.
  • Forming trusted partnership networks across industry, academia, government, nonprofits, civil society, and communities of practice to foster scientific innovation and the exchange of proposals or personnel.

These programs are intended to accelerate technology advancement and commercialization, innovation and entrepreneurship, job creation and workforce training, and more. Ultimately, these programs should contribute to regional economic growth and U.S. competitiveness in key technology areas.

Still, each agency has its own focus. The NSF Engines program harnesses the nation's science and technology research and development (R&D) enterprise and regional-level resources. NSF Engines aspire to catalyze robust partnerships to positively impact the economy within a geographic region, address societal challenges, advance national competitiveness, and create local, high-wage jobs.

Tech Hubs program investments leverage existing R&D and technology deployment capacities but do not directly fund R&D. The program is intended to advance the capacities of places to manufacture, commercialize and deploy these technologies.

nsf, eda, CHIPS and Science Act