Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Small-Firm Experience in the Advanced Technology Program



J Powell


This paper assesses plans and progress of high technology small firms (HTSF) funded by the Advanced Technology Program (ATP), a U.S. civilian science and technology program, administered by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), within the U.S. Department of Commerce. Based on data collected through the ATP's Business Reporting System (BRS), project goals and expected commercial advantage, strategies for commercialization, collaboration experience on ATP projects, effects of ATP funding, and progress towards commercializing ATP-funded technologies are examined for small firms funded by the ATP during the period 1993 through 1996 in comparison with the population of all organizations funded by the ATP during the same period.Findings are that small firms appeared to have more aggressive performance and cost goals than all organizations as a whole. While collaborative activity was strong for both small firms and all organizations, small firms placed more emphasis on strategic alliances with customers and other supply chain linkages and more frequently reported significant effects of collaboration on raising capital. Small firms also reported a greater leveraging effect of ATP funding in stimulating investment of internal company funds in the ATP-funded technology areas. At similar stages of their projects, small firms and all organizations as a whole had achieved an equivalent level of progress in commercialization planning across all commercial applications being pursued. A larger percentage of small firms had set up pilot production or begun production for at least one application. Small firms had filed fewer patents, on average, per firm; however, a larger percentage of small firms had filed for at least one patent. Overall, based on the findings, it is concluded that small firms as a group are pursuing ambitious research and commercialization goals and taking the necessary steps to make their technology development projects succeed.
Conference Dates
June 4-5, 1998
Conference Location
The Netherlands, 1
Conference Title
High-Technology Small Firms Conference


Advanced Technology Program, Business Reporting System, economic evaluation, R&D


Powell, J. (2008), Small-Firm Experience in the Advanced Technology Program, High-Technology Small Firms Conference, The Netherlands, 1 (Accessed July 16, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created October 16, 2008