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NSF Innovation Corps Hubs Program (I-CorpsTM Hubs)

Status: Archived

Archived funding opportunity

This document has been archived. See NSF 24-532 for the latest version.

Important information for proposers

All proposals must be submitted in accordance with the requirements specified in this funding opportunity and in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) that is in effect for the relevant due date to which the proposal is being submitted. It is the responsibility of the proposer to ensure that the proposal meets these requirements. Submitting a proposal prior to a specified deadline does not negate this requirement.

Note: Trademark hereafter asserted and referred to as I-Corps.


The National Science Foundation (NSF) seeks to further develop and nurture a national innovation ecosystem that guides the output of scientific discoveries closer to the development of technologies, products, and services that benefit society. The goal of the NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps) Program, created in 2011 by NSF, has been and will continue to be to reduce the time and risk associated with translating promising ideas and technologies from the laboratory to the marketplace. The I-Corps Program utilizes experiential learning of customer and industry discovery, coupled with first-hand investigation of industrial processes, to quickly assess the translational potential of inventions.  The I-Corps Program is designed to support the commercialization of so-called "deep technologies,” or those revolving around fundamental discoveries in science and engineering. The I-Corps program addresses the skill and knowledge gap associated with the transformation of basic research into deep technology ventures (DTVs).

In the program’s initial phase, I-Corps Nodes and Sites were funded separately to serve as the backbone of the National Innovation Network (NIN). Previous solicitations for NSF I-Corps Nodes and NSF I-Corps Sites have now been archived. This new solicitation for I-Corps Hubs has been informed by feedback received from the community and lessons learned over the first eight years of the program.   

In 2017, the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act (AICA, Public Law 114-329, Sec. 601) formally authorized and directed the expansion of the NSF I-Corps Program. Through this solicitation, NSF seeks to evolve the current structure, in which NSF I-Corps Teams, Nodes, and Sites are funded through separate programs, toward a more integrated operational model capable of sustained operation at the scope and scale required to support the expansion of the NSF I-Corps Program as directed by AICA. In this more integrated model, I-Corps Hubs, comprising a Principal and at least two Partner institutions, form the backbone of the NIN, and each Hub has at least five Affiliates that extend the network to other institutions. Each Hub is funded through a single award. Throughout this solicitation, the term "Hub" refers to all associated organizations identified in a proposal responding to this solicitation, including the Principal, Partners, and Affiliates.

Updates and announcements

Program contacts

Ruth Shuman
rshuman@nsf.gov (703) 292-2160 TIP/TI
Rebecca Shearman
rshearma@nsf.gov (703) 292-7403 TIP/ITE

Awards made through this program

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