Policy ForumSCIENCE AND INDUSTRY

Federal Laboratory–Business Commercialization Partnerships

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Science  14 Sep 2012:
Vol. 337, Issue 6100, pp. 1297-1298
DOI: 10.1126/science.1221962

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Summary

U.S. federal laboratories, government-owned and either government-operated (GOGO) or contractor-operated (GOCO), spent $40.4 billion on research and development (R&D) in 2009. This represents 30% of U.S. federally funded R&D obligations (1). Federal labs offer unique resources, including multidisciplinary teams of scientists and engineers, large and complex facilities, and ability to work on classified research. Given these resources and increasing calls for greater returns on federally funded R&D investment, the U.S. government has solicited the labs to engage and facilitate partnerships with businesses to produce commercial technologies [e.g., (2)].