SBIR/STTR changes due to Public Law No: 117-183

  • February 20, 2024

The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs have been reauthorized through FY2025 with modifications, as per Public Law No: 117-183 (09/30/2022). One of the significant changes in the SBIR/STTR programs is the requirement for small businesses to disclose relationships with foreign countries of concern, as defined in 15 U.S.C. § 638(e)(17). This mandate aims to address national security risks and foreign influence in the SBIR/STTR programs.

Foreign Countries of Concern

As per the definition, foreign countries of concern include:

  • People’s Republic of China
  • Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
  • Russian Federation
  • Islamic Republic of Iran

Additionally, any other country determined to be a country of concern by the Secretary of State may also be included in this list in the future.

Disclosure Requirements

SBIR and STTR applicants must disclose the following information regarding their ties to foreign countries of concern:

  1. Foreign affiliations
  2. Operations and contractual relationships
  3. Malign foreign talent recruitment programs

Agencies are prohibited from making SBIR/STTR awards if the small business has ties with a foreign country of concern, and the agency determines that the ties pose a risk to national security or present other concerns.

Compliance and Reporting

SBIR/STTR recipients are responsible for monitoring their relationships with foreign countries of concern for any changes that may impact previous disclosures. They are required to submit updated disclosure forms to the relevant agencies throughout the duration of the award. Failure to submit this information can result in the denial or discontinuation of an award.


The SBIR/STTR program plays a crucial role in supporting scientific excellence and technological innovation through small businesses. The recent reauthorization and modifications to the programs emphasize the importance of protecting against foreign interference, especially from countries of concern. SBIR and STTR applicants must carefully review and comply with these new requirements to ensure their eligibility for funding and avoid potential risks.

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