OCAST Strategic Partners
OCAST is a state agency which is funded solely through state appropriations and is uniquely positioned to serve as the bridge between research activities and business needs. Through its network of strategic partnerships, OCAST creates a continuum of services that enables and accelerates the transition of ideas from the laboratory to the market. It is through this continuum of services that OCAST is able to carry out its mission of fostering innovation throughout Oklahoma’s economy and generating a significant economic impact that is resultant of such an endeavor.
The Oklahoma Innovation Model is a public private partnership which in addition to the four strategic partners also works closely with Higher Education, the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technical Education, regional manufacturing associations, Oklahoma’s Department of Defense installations, private industry, Oklahoma economic development organizations and economic development organization in other states.
THE STRATEGIC PARTNERS
The OCAST supported Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance, Oklahoma’s NIST MEP Center, offers technical assistance and business advice, helping companies become more innovative and successful. Through their statewide network of manufacturing extension agents and applications engineers, services focus on improving the bottom line while growing the entire business.
Through a partnership with Oklahoma State University’s New Product Development Center (NPDC) OCAST offers the Inventor's Assistance Service (IAS) which provides guidance and resources to Oklahoma's inventors. IAS provides services in the area of preliminary patent searches, market analyses, manufacturing referrals, engineering analyses, prototyping, and drawing/model design. The NPDC also links the innovative ideas and capabilities of Oklahoma's small-and medium-sized manufacturers with the knowledge and technical expertise of the land grant university faculty, staff and students. This collaboration allows for the development and commercialization of economically competitive new products and improves manufacturing practices that strengthen economies, create new and enhanced jobs, improve capital investment and increase tax base.
OCAST partners with the non-profit i2E Inc. to support its mission of working directly with entrepreneurs, researchers and companies to help them commercialize their technologies, launch and grow new businesses and access needed capital. Clients like the fact that i2E staff consists of experienced entrepreneurs and investors who have walked in their shoes.
Through the federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, federal agencies provide seed support for product feasibility studies and prototype development that is lacking in the private investment community. The federal Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program accomplishes this purpose and forges research collaborations between small firms and universities or nonprofit research institutions. Both the SBIR and STTR programs encourage transfer of technology into federal agency programs and private sector applications. OCAST’s program offers technical assistance through the Oklahoma Catalyst Programs at the University of Oklahoma Tom Love Innovation Center to improve the quality of proposals. The program offers companies guidance in accessing additional OCAST support and other resources as appropriate to their respective stage of development.