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100 Bureau Drive, M/S 4800
Gaithersburg, MD 20899-4800

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Partnership Agreements

NIST MEP's partnerships with federal agencies are formalized through the execution of Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) and Memorandums of Agreement (MOA).  Such agreements build and maintain relationships, enable leveraging of resources and provide for channels of communication amongst agencies.  Each agreement is unique in terms of the details outlining the specific nature of the partnership.  NIST MEP has executed these agreements with a variety of federal agencies.

NIST MEP has posted the MOUs and MOAs to be transparent about our partnerships, and to share information about the nature of the agreements to facilitate development of state- and local-level agreements that complement the MOUs and MOAs already in place.  This list will be kept current with updated information on the status of these agreements.

MOUs and MOAs:
  • Strengthen and determine the scope of the partnership
  • Are utilized by MEP Centers to strengthen and expand their relationships with their regional federal agencies
  • May be used by MEP Centers to provide a platform for discussions with state and local partners


US Patent and Trademark Office

This MOU will enable coordination and cooperation between NIST and the USPTO in their efforts to distribute Intellectual Property information to US manufacturers.  Such efforts may include the following: leveraging USPTO’s educational resources on intellectual property with NIST’s reach to industry, developing  a prototype and training materials for an awareness assessment tool, developing an innovation pipeline using patent mining, sharing program contacts to expand reach, and any other activities that will increase integration of the resources and capabilities of USPTO and NIST.

University Economic Development Association

The purpose for this MOU is to formally explore areas of mutual interest with the goal of establishing collaborative efforts and activities.  The MEP and the UEDA will work together to achieve productive and effective working relationships with higher education and university economic development-based programs thereby improving their efforts to strengthen the US economy.  The MOU outlines initial joint efforts such as sharing information on best practices, innovation, emerging technologies, technology scouting, co-sponsoring events, developing metrics to assess innovation and services, and supporting collaborative activities that benefit manufacturers.

Association of Procurement Technical Assistance Centers

The main objective for this MOU is to promote joint efforts between NIST MEP and APTAC with the goal of supporting businesses and industries doing business with the Federal Government.  Specific activities outlined in the MOU include, training and consulting services for businesses on government contracting, outreach to businesses on the government procurement policies and practices through events, webinars, newsletters, and websites.  The MOU specifically mentions awareness and training on the Department of Defense's policy on the RFID initiative. 

E3- Energy, Economy and Environment

This MOU provides the framework for DOC, EPA, SBA, DOL and DOE to establish and collaborate on the Economy, Energy, and Environment Initiative.  E3 projects are public-private partnerships that are driven by communities to assist manufacturers in becoming more sustainable, competitive and energy efficient.  Specifically, the MOU outlines the activities in the E3 initiative such as plant-specific assessments, business and strategic plans that incorporate the assessment recommendations, information on financing and training, and opportunities to network with others about challenges and opportunities.

E3- Addendum

This addendum adds the US Department of Agriculture to the E3 MOU.  The USDA through their Rural Development Program will engage local networks to provide services such as financial and technical assistance to rural businesses, agricultural producers and cooperatives, as well as services to help communities undertake empowerment programs.

American Association of Community Colleges and the Economic Development Administration

The main objective for this MOU is to facilitate increased cooperation between the NIST MEP network and the community colleges, as well as between EDA and the local community colleges, to leverage their partnerships and work more effectively together to improve efforts to strengthen the U.S. economy.  The MOU outlines specific activities such as co-sponsoring of events, linkages of skill certification and curriculum development to company needs, export promotion, innovation, and other services that support manufacturing companies.

Economic Development Administration

This purpose for this MOU is to establish an agreement between EDA and NIST MEP under which EDA provides funding to NIST MEP for expenses related to specific activities involved in carrying out the Policy Academy, “Making” Our Future: Encouraging Growth Opportunities in Manufacturing through Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Investment.

International Trade Administration Commercial Service

The purpose for this MOU is to establish a more formal working relationship between NIST MEP and the International Trade Administration US Foreign and Commercial Service offices to more efficiently serve the U.S. manufacturing base and increase global exports.  The MOU states specific activities such as export seminars, market segmentation research, knowledge sharing, international trade leads, field office referral, and the development of tools that benefit both organizations.

Department of Transportation
This Memorandum of Agreement between Department of Commerce and the Department of Transportation will establish a collaboration between the two agencies on a series of activities that will ensure the development of a the domestic supply base to support intermodal transportation in the U.S.  The MEP will assist DOT in complying with the Buy America or Buy American provisions which requires that certain projects are built with U.S. -made products.  The MOA also states that both MEP and DOT will encourage DOT technologies to be transitioned into commercial markets and applications.

Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
The purpose of this MOU is for NIST’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership and the Department of Energy’s EERE to establish and collaborate on activities that support energy efficiency in the industrial and commercial sectors.  The MOU defines specific areas of collaboration to align with DOE’s Building Technologies and Industrial Technologies Programs.

International Trade Administration- U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service

This Memorandum of Intent between MEP and ITA establishes opportunities for collaboration between the two agencies.  It includes; continuing to deliver the ExporTech programs, collaborating on market research to better understand the needs and behaviors of clients and program impacts, coordinating leads to connect manufacturers with potential international partners, instituting a referral and joint delivery system, and developing collaborations with other third parties to further support the  missions of both organizations.