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NSF Regional Innovation Engines

Synopsis. The NSF Regional Innovation Engines (NSF Engines) program is a bold new initiative, committed to creating regional-scale, technology-driven innovation ecosystems throughout every region of the United States, accelerating emerging technologies, driving economic growth, addressing key societal challenges, and maintaining national competitiveness. The NSF Engines program aims to fund regional coalitions of partnering organizations to establish NSF Engines that will catalyze technology and science-based regional innovation ecosystems. Each Engine must focus on addressing specific aspects of a major societal and/or economic challenge that are of significant interest in the Engine’s defined “region of service,” where such a region could range from a metropolitan area (including its adjacent rural regions) to an area spanning parts of several states. The mission of an Engine must be clearly rooted in regional interests and the development of regional talent. The emphasis on “regions” expresses NSF’s aim to stimulate innovation-driven economic growth within a particular region of service. The NSF Engines program is particularly interested in creating new business and economic growth in those regions of America that have not fully participated in the technology boom of the past several decades.

NSF will fund Engines to carry out an integrated and comprehensive set of activities spanning use-inspired research, translation-to-practice, entrepreneurship, and workforce development to nurture and accelerate regional industries. Engines must also work to bring together an inclusive and diverse network of partners and stakeholders who will participate in the regional innovation ecosystem. With the goal of advancing emerging industries and creating societal and economic value, NSF Engines will emphasize research that meaningfully engages the consumers of research outcomes in motivating that research as well as in the subsequent prototyping and piloting of research-based solutions (i.e., co-design and co-creation), the translation of research results to practice, entrepreneurship, and direct economic growth.

Eligibility. One proposal as lead organization.

Internal Proposals.  Interested applicants are invited to submit to RIT the Concept Outline that was submitted to NSF in response to the BAA:

Please submit Internal Proposals here:

Deadlines. Internal proposals are due by 5 pm on August 3, 2022. Internal competition decisions are targeted by August 15, 2022. See the following key dates:

Type-1 and Type-2 Concept Outlines: Due June 30, 2022

Type-1 Letters of Intent: Due August 31, 2022

Type-1 Full Proposals: Due September 29, 2022

Type-2 Letters of Intent: Due in FY 2023 at a date to be announced.

Type-2 Full Proposals: Due in FY 2023 at a date to be announced.