Audit Report: The Department of Energy's Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs [open pdf - 6MB]
"The Department of Energy's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs award grants to encourage scientific effort leading to the application of new ideas and technology. The combined annual funding available for these two programs grew from $116.8 million in Fiscal Year (FY) 2006 to $175.5 million in FY 2012. In addition, the programs received $92 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 funding. The Office of Science's SBIR/STTR Office is responsible for managing funds from 12 of the 13 Department offices that contribute funding to the programs, with acquisition assistance from the Office of Science's Chicago Office. In FY 2012, the Advanced Research Projects Agency�'Energy started an SBIR/STTR program that was not included in our audit because of its brief period of operation. In FY 2010, which was the focus of our review, the Department received approximately 1,800 applications for SBIR and STTR for regular funding announcements, and approximately 1,000 applications for the Recovery Act funding announcements. The Department established a merit-based process for scoring grant applications to determine which were to be approved. In our previous report on SBIR grants, 'Management Controls over Monitoring and Closeout of Small Business Innovation Research Phase II Grants' (OAS-M-08-09, July 2008), we pointed out that there had been no resolution of questioned costs associated with the grants and that the grants had not been closed out in a timely manner. Due to the issues identified in our prior audit and the growth of the programs in recent years, we initiated this audit to determine whether the Department had effectively managed the SBIR and STTR programs. Additionally, we reviewed circumstances surrounding an allegation involving a potential conflict of interest."
Department of Energy, Office of Inspector General, Report No. DOE/IG-0876
Department of Energy: http://energy.gov/