Phase I/Phase II review criteria

Phase I/Phase II applications

Significance:

  • Does the proposed project have commercial potential to lead to a marketable product or process?
  • Does this study address an important problem?
  • What may be the anticipated commercial and societal benefits of the proposed activity?
  • If the aims of the application are achieved, how will scientific knowledge be advanced?
  • Does the application lead to enabling technologies (e.g., instrumentation, software) for further discoveries?
  • Will the technology have a competitive advantage over existing/alternate technologies that can meet the market needs?

Approach:

  • Are the conceptual framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well integrated, and appropriate to the aims of the project?
  • Is the proposed plan a sound approach for establishing technical and commercial feasibility?
  • Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider alternative strategies?
  • Are the milestones and evaluation procedures appropriate?

Innovation:

  • Does the project challenge existing paradigms or employ novel technologies, approaches or methodologies?
  • Are the aims original and innovative?

Investigators:

  • Is the Principal Investigator capable of coordinating and managing the proposed SBIR/STTR?
  • Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level of the Principal Investigator and other researchers, including consultants and subcontractors (if any)?
  • Are the relationships of the key personnel to the small business and to other institutions appropriate for the work proposed?

Environment:

  • Is there sufficient access to resources (e.g., equipment, facilities)?
  • Does the scientific and technological environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success?
  • Do the proposed experiments take advantage of unique features of the scientific environment or employ useful collaborative arrangements?

Additional review criteria:

In addition to the above criteria, your application will also be reviewed with respect to the following:

Protections:

The adequacy of the proposed protection for humans, animals, or the environment, to the extent they may be adversely affected by the project proposed in the application.

Inclusion:

The adequacy of plans to include subjects from both genders, all racial and ethnic groups (and subgroups), and children as appropriate for the scientific goals of the research. Plans for the recruitment and retention of subjects will also be evaluated. (See Inclusion Criteria included in the section on Federal Citations, below)

Budget:

The reasonableness of the proposed budget and the requested period of support in relation to the proposed research.

Phase II applications

In addition to the above criteria:

  • How well did the applicant demonstrate progress toward meeting the Phase I objectives, demonstrating feasibility, and providing a solid foundation for the proposed Phase II activity?
  • Did the applicant submit a concise Product Development Plan that adequately addresses the four areas described in the Research Plan item J?
  • Does the project carry a high degree of commercial potential, as described in the Product Development Plan?

Phase I/Phase II/Fast Track application review criteria

For Phase I/Phase II Fast Track applications, the following criteria also will be applied:

  • Does the Phase I application specify clear, appropriate, measurable goals (milestones) that should be achieved prior to initiating Phase II?
  • Did the applicant submit a concise Product Development Plan that adequately addresses the four areas described in the Research Plan, item J?
  • To what extent was the applicant able to obtain letters of interest, additional funding commitments, and/or resources from the private sector or non-SBIR/ STTR funding sources that would enhance the likelihood for commercialization?
  • Does the project carry a high degree of commercial potential, as described in the Product Development Plan?

Phase I and Phase II Fast Track applications that satisfy all of the review criteria will receive a single rating. Failure to provide clear, measurable goals may be sufficient reason for the scientific review group to exclude the Phase II application from Fast Track review.