SBIR/STTR Phase 1 F&A Rate Reduction Pilot Program


The Office of Research has established a program to encourage UCI's participation in the U.S. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, as well as increase interactions with promising small business concerns (SBCs) interested in advancing innovative technology of mutual interest. Through this program, UCI will apply a facilities and administrative (F&A) cost rate of 26% modified total direct costs (MTDC) to all UCI subcontract proposals to SBCs applying for either SBIR or STTR Phase 1 funding.


The SBIR program is a competitive research funding program that encourages domestic SBCs to engage in Federal research and development. The objective of SBIR Phase I awards is to establish the technical/scientific merit and feasibility of a proposed research or research & development activity. It also encourages – but does not require – collaboration between U.S. SBCs and U.S. nonprofit research institutions (NRIs). If a SBC partners with a NRI, the SBIR award is made to the SBC who is then responsible for subcontracting to the NRI. As a requirement of the funding program, SBCs must carry out at least 67% of the proposed research and/or analytical effort. The remaining 33% may be conducted by the NRI partner.

The STTR program is a competitive research funding program aimed at stimulating technological innovation, fostering technology transfer and increasing private sector commercialization of technologies arising from federal funding. The central focus of this program is bridging the gap between basic science and commercialization of resulting innovations. There are three important aspects that distinguish the STTR program from the SBIR program:

  1. SBC applicants must partner with NRI.
  2. NRI’s are required to perform at least 30% and no more than 60% of the proposed research.
  3. The SBC and NRI must establish an intellectual property agreement detailing the allocation of intellectual property rights and rights to carry out follow-on research, development or commercialization activities.

Each Federal agency participating in the SBIR or STTR program is responsible for administering its own program under established Congressional guidelines. General information about both of these programs and the Federal agencies participating in them may be found at

Program Guidelines

The following guidelines are applicable to this program:

  • Only subcontract proposals to SBCs applying for either SBIR or STTR Phase I funding are eligible for this program.
  • Subcontract proposals under this program may budget F&A costs at a rate of 26% MTDC. This is the lowest rate available; all requests for a lower rate will be returned.
  • A separate request, using the approved template forms must be submitted toto the Industry Sponsored Research (ISR) unit in Applied Innovation (AI) for each proposal under this program. Requests must be received no later than the time the proposal package is submitted toISR for institutional review and signature. At that time, ISR will endorse the request form and submit it to the UC Office of the President for approval. Requests that are not submitted on the approved forms will be returned.
  • The Principal Investigator, administering unit, the head of the administering unit (e.g., department chair, director) and coordinating unit head (e.g., dean, vice chancellor) are collectively responsible for ensuring compliance with UCI and UC policies in the proposing, administration and conduct of projects under this program. Applicable polices include, but are not limited to:

Request form templates

Questions regarding this program should be directed to either Bruce Morgan, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research Administration at (949) 824-5677 or, Nancy Lewis, Director of Sponsored Projects Administration at (949) 824-2897 or, or Kevin Kennan, Director, Industry Sponsored Research at (949) 824-4608 or

News & Announcements

View More