Nanotechnology RFI seeks input on public-private partnerships, commercialization

The National Nanotechnology Coordination Office (NNCO) is looking for feedback to inform its 2021 strategic plan, including input specifically related to public-private partnerships and other mechanisms by which to facilitate commercialization of nanotechnology.

Details of the Request For Information (RFI) were published in the Federal Register on October 13 by the Office of Science & Technology Policy (OSTP). Responses are requested by 11:59 p.m. ET on November 9, 2020.

The National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) is a U.S. Government research and development (R&D) program of 20 departments and independent agencies working together toward the common vision of a future in which the ability to understand and control matter at the nanoscale level leads to a revolution in technology and industry that benefits society. NNI R&D User Facilities are affiliated with five Department of Energy laboratories, the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the National Science Foundation.

The NNI Strategic Plan provides the framework that underpins the nanotechnology activities of the NNI agencies and ensures continued advances in nanotechnology R&D and their applications. The plan describes the NNI vision and goals, as well as the mechanisms used to support progress.

A report recently released by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recommends that the NNI continue and be reorganized and relaunched to promote a renewed focus on nanotechnology and respond to the dynamic global research environment.This recommendation has triggered the current RFI, which includes a list of questions below to help identify effective mechanisms, strategies for communication, and priority topics to inform the future directions of the NNI.

Questions related to technology transfer include:

* What is your understanding of how the Federal Government has supported the nanotechnology community since the launch of the NNI?

* How should this support evolve into 2030 and beyond? What mechanisms and programs are necessary to support the broad NNI R&D portfolio?

* How can the government engage effectively with stakeholders in industry and academia to advance nanotechnology research, development, and eventual commercialization? What are some best practices for this kind of engagement?

* How could public-private partnerships contribute to progress towards the NNI goals? Are there any examples (domestic or international) of productive partnership mechanisms that should be considered as a model?

* How can the NNCO facilitate communication and collaboration throughout the nanotechnology R&D ecosystem to enhance research and ultimately commercialization?

* What specific nanotechnology topics could be accelerated to commercialization by public-private partnerships?

Read the RFI:

Read the NASEM report: