NSF I-Corps (aka Innovation Corps)

NSF I-Corps (pronounced "eye-core") is an accelerator program created by the NSF to help translate scientific and engineering discoveries into commercial ventures.

Participating teams receive a $50,000 grant and gain real-world, hands-on, immersive learning about what it takes to successfully transfer knowledge into products and processes that benefit society. The NSF runs at least three cohorts a quarter, at sites around the country. More details on the NSF I-Corps Teams page.

Considering applying to I-Corps?
Join an introductory webinar! A full description of the criteria, proposal instructions and other essential information is available in the I-Corps Teams Solicitation and Teams FAQ. Visit the NSF's I-Corps Teams page and/or contact entrepreneur@nyu.edu to learn more and/or how to apply.

  • Who It's For?

    NYU faculty and researchers with research or an invention they are seeking to commercialize through a startup venture.

    To be eligible to apply to NSF I-Corps, a member of the team must have received a prior NSF research grant that was active within five years from the date of the I-Corps Teams proposal submission. The lineage of the prior award extends to the PI, Co-PIs, senior personnel, postdocs, professional staff, or others who were supported under the award.

    NSF I-Corps Teams must apply as a team, consisting of at least three individuals:

    • The Entrepreneurial Lead (EL) could be a postdoctoral scholar, graduate or other student, staff member, researcher, or other personnel with relevant knowledge of the technology and a deep commitment to investigate the commercial landscape surrounding the innovation. The EL should also be capable and have the will to support the transition of the technology, should the I-Corps Teams project demonstrate the potential for commercial viability.
    • The I-Corps Teams Mentor (IM) will typically be an experienced entrepreneur with proximity to the institution and experience in transitioning technology out of academic labs. The I-Corps Teams Mentor should be a third-party resource and may be recommended by the proposing institution. The I-Corps Teams Mentor will be responsible for advising the team on its progress through I-Corps and will usually have contacts in the industry area(s) being explored.
    • The Technical Lead (TL) will typically be a faculty member, senior research scientist or postdoctoral scholar with deep and direct technical expertise in the actual core technology about which the I-Corps team is exploring commercial potential. Typically the Technical Lead will also serve as the Principal Investigator (PI).

    Teams may have an additional member in the role of co-EL, co-TL, or co-IM. Teams with more than four members will not typically be supported.

    For teams with prior NSF funding lineage, they may apply to participate in the NYU Tech Venture Workshop. Upon completion of the Workshop, the team is eligible to apply to NSF I-Corps.

  • Tell Me More

    The NYU Entrepreneurial Institute can help you prepare to apply to NSF I-Corps. Application requirements include:

    • Having a team in place at the time of application that includes an EL, IM, and TL (see above).
    • Understanding the significant time commitment required for this program
    • For the NSF program only: having an active NSF award within the last 5 years related to the invention you’ll commercialize through the program

    Contact entrepreneur@nyu.edu to learn more about how to apply.