How to Fund Your Latest STEM Project: The SBIR Grant

How to Fund Your Next STEM Project

Are you interested in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics or STEM? Maybe your business can benefit from technology. Did you know you could get an advancement in technology for your business funded by the federal government? The Small Business Innovation Research or SBIR program encourages small businesses in America to get involved with Federal Research or Research and Development (R/R&D). Specifically, for research and development with the possibility of commercialization. And, if you need a grant written for a STEM-related project, consult our team of grant writing specialists at It’s really easy to use!

Is the SBIR Grant Right For My Business?

A grant funded by SBIR allows your business to research methods of technological advancement, or apply to a company-wide technological update. It may also include research or research and development in another way. Maybe you are a nonprofit clinic looking to update your equipment. Or maybe you want to switch to electronic records. An SBIR grant maybe right for you. To learn more about the types of projects the SBIR funds, check out under “Awards” in the menu.

What is SBIR?

According to,

“The mission of the SBIR program is to support scientific excellence and technological innovation through the investment of Federal research funds in critical American priorities to build a strong national economy.”

The SBIR has four goals: 1) Stimulate technological innovation, 2) Meet Federal research and development needs, 3) Foster and encourage participation in innovation and entrepreneurship by socially and economically disadvantaged persons, and 4) Increase private-sector commercialization of innovations derived from Federal research and development funding.

How Do I Apply for an SBIR grant?

According to NIH, there are several ways to apply for an SBIR grant. The most commonly utilized method is through ASSIST. Other people may opt for Institutional Solutions or System-to-System (S2S), Workspace, or downloadable forms. An important thing to remember is that SBIR is a 3-phase program. According to, in Phase I, the grantee must establish “technical merit, feasibility, and commercial potential of the proposed R/R&D efforts.” In Phase II, funding is based on results achieved in Phase I. Finally, the objective of Phase III is to “pursue commercialization objectives resulting from the Phase I/II R/R&D activities.”

How to Develop a Successful SBIR Proposal

For additional information on applying to an SBIR grant, check out this book titled How to Develop a Winning Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Proposal: Government Contracting Knowledge Series by Eric Adolphe.

The STTR or Small Business Technology Transfer program is another federally funded program. The difference is the STTR requires the small business to collaborate with a Phase I or Phase II level research institution.

Before Applying for a SBIR Grant

Search through for STEM related grants. You might find something that applies to you. Good search terms may be in the list located to the right of the screen like Health and MedicalScience, or Technology. Furthermore, for news on grants and tips on grant writing, visit

Find More Grants Like These!

There are foundations and government agencies that want to fund STEM grants for small businesses and nonprofits. Consider applying to the following funding opportunities to promote business/education growth in the field of STEM:

All these, plus thousands more, may be found on  Fund your organization’s next project with a vast number of grants and sponsors to choose from and engage.


You may also want to consider synergizing your efforts by crowdfunding. Crowdfunding will allow money to be funnelled to your project by multiple sources. To learn about how to crowdfund, visit There are 100 categories from which to choose.