National Women's Business Council Report


NWBC and the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Investment and Innovation (OII) Conduct a Study on the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. NWBC is a non-partisan federal advisory committee created to serve as an independent source of advice and policy recommendations to the President, Congress, and the U.S. Small Business Administration on economic issues of importance to women business owners, commissions the first comprehensive study examining the factors that may influence women’s participation in the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs—also known as America’s Seed Fund.

NWBC intends for this report  to provide a baseline understanding of the inclusion of women entrepreneurs and female principal investigators in the advanced technology business realm funded by SBIR/STTR. The report also highlights targeted efforts to increase the involvement of women by the 11 funding agencies and SBA-funded entrepreneurial support organizations.

This study uses award-level administrative data provided by funding agencies to the SBA and is publicly available on

“Female business owners and entrepreneurs in all types of industries continue to grow in number and influence,” said NWBC Women in STEM Subcommittee Chair, Monica Stynchula. “NWBC is committed to advocating for women in business, including STEM innovators and entrepreneurs, and this study will help inform  the Council’s policy recommendations to Congress, the White House, and SBA set to be released later this year. Federal programs like SBIR and STTR give women the opportunity to innovate and launch or expand their enterprise.”

The SBIR and STTR programs provide $4 billion each year to a diverse portfolio of startups and small businesses. Eleven Federal agencies fund technology across sectors to stimulate technological innovation, meet Federal research and development (R&D) needs, and increase commercialization to transition R&D into impact.

Startup Tucson was highlighted in the report for providing information in interviews conducted to compile the report:

"Startup Tucson provides comprehensive services for entrepreneurs that include Discovery and Networking Events, Educational Programming and a free membership hub called The Startup Tucson Network. The organization is known for its larger regional ecosystem building events, TENWEST Festival of Innovation and IdeaFunding. The Startup Tucson model was tailored to Tucson’s unique ecosystem through implementing a combination of national best practices, entrepreneurs’ feedback, and the Startup Tucson Advisory Council. The organization is “industry agnostic” and open to entrepreneurs of all kinds-- from software and technology to artisans and creatives."

Read the full report here.

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