innovation

IL and IN create innovation voucher programs to increase small business prospects

Indiana and Illinois are two of the most recent states to implement innovation voucher programs, adding another tool to their efforts to increase economic activity among innovators and entrepreneurs.

France unveils $35B investment plan for innovative technology

France announced a $35 billion five-year plan to develop innovative technology and industrial activity to help boost its economic growth. An AP news story said the plan includes $9.2 billion to develop energy technology to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and additional funding to finance small nuclear reactors. Called France 2030, the plan contains 10 objectives including making France a green hydrogen leader with at least two gigafactories of electrolysers that will produce hydrogen; decarbonize industry by reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 35 percent compared to 2015; produce nearly 2 million electric and hybrid vehicles; and, build low-carbon aircraft.

$36.5 million awarded to 50 recipients for Build to Scale program

The U.S. Economic Development Administration today announced the 50 organizations that will share in grants totaling $36.5 million to support programs that fuel innovation and tech-based economic development as part of the Build to Scale program. The 2021 awardees will leverage an additional $40 million in matching funds from a variety of private and public sector sources. SSTI has been a proponent of the Build to Scale program, which had not received any federal appropriations prior to the creation of SSTI’s Innovation Advocacy Council.

$5.4M in prizes to support inclusive entrepreneurship announced by SBA

The Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced a combined total of $5.4 million in awards to innovation-focused entrepreneur support organizations with programs to support entrepreneurs researching and developing STEM-related innovations. The 2021 competition included two prize tracks with 84 winners for the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition (GAFC) and eight winners for the new SBIR Catalyst competition, which aims to spur investment in underrepresented communities within the innovation economy.  

DOC seeking NACIE applicants

The U.S. Department of Commerce is seeking applicants for the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE). NACIE advises the U.S. Secretary of Commerce on matters related to accelerating innovation and entrepreneurship, advancing the commercialization of research and development, promoting workforce development, and other related matters. NACIE is managed by the Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Members will be selected based on their ability to advise the secretary on matters relating to the acceleration of innovation and the support for and expansion of entrepreneurship, and will serve for two years. 

NSF establishes new I-Corps Hubs to advance National Innovation Network

NSF announced five new multi-institution I-Corps Hubs to deliver entrepreneurship training to academic researchers and scale the National Innovation Network. Each hub is funded at $3 million per year for five years and comprises a regional alliance of at least eight universities. The hubs are intended to offer a more integrated approach than the previous I-Corps Nodes and I-Corps Sites, which were funded separately. The new model will provide increase funding and enable scaling I-Corps across the country.

PA creating Innovation Economy Dashboard

The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) in partnership with a student team at Carnegie Mellon University has developed a new Innovation Economy Dashboard that is intended to help inform policymaking decisions based on reliable data. The dashboard and an accompanying report on Pennsylvania’s Innovation Economy originated from Gov.

Arkansas’s economic recovery strategy has wider applicability

Whether or not your state embraced strict measures in an attempt to reduce virus spread, the current pandemic has created the need for reflection and revision of how each of us go about our lives. The same opportunity has arisen for the public and private sectors to rethink how they engage in many core functions.

Want companies that have higher long-term job stickiness, survival rates and sales? If so, read this

Regardless of the approach used, the goal of every economic development program in the country is to create economic opportunity within a specific geographic area. If more local, state and federal policy makers and practitioners were aware that empirical research has revealed certain types of companies were 235 percent better than others at maintaining long-term job “stickiness,” would we shift more resources and priorities in their direction?  Would knowing these same companies also were shown to be more profitable, had higher sales, and had greater survival rates than others help persuade skeptics? Should more companies with these business models be part of your region’s portfolio of innovation-based firms?

Recent Research: Examining effective policies to support high-risk/high-reward research

High-risk/high-reward research can yield breakthroughs, produce new technologies, and allow the surrounding region to remain economically relevant. However, the scientific community remains concerned that research and development-focused policies, both in the U.S. and elsewhere, continue to be conservative with their goals by only encouraging incremental growth that can yield tangible results in shorter amounts of time. These concerns, and potential policy solutions, are explored in a recently published research paper by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

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