Sunday, February 19, 2017


A Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) is a written agreement between a private company and NOAA to work together on a project.  Created as the result of the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980, as amended by the Federal Technology Transfer Act of 1986, a CRADA allows NOAA and non-Federal partners to optimize their resources, share technical expertise in a protected environment, share intellectual property emerging from the effort, and speed the commercialization of NOAA developed technology.

CRADAs are one of the principal mechanisms used by NOAA laboratories to engage in collaborative efforts with non-federal partners to achieve the goals of technology transfer. The CRADA, which is not an acquisition or procurement vehicle, is designed to be a relatively easy mechanism to implement, requiring less time and effort to initiate than previous methods for working with non-government organizations. The CRADA is also intended to take into account the needs and desires of private industry when commercializing a product.

A CRADA can:

  • Provide incentives that help speed up the commercialization of NOAA developed technology.

  • Protect any propriety information brought to the CRADA effort by the partner.

  • Allow all parties to keep research result emerging from the CRADA confidential and free from disclosure through the Freedom of Information Act for up to five years.

  • Allow NOAA and the partner to share patents and patent licenses.


If you have already identified a partner in a NOAA laboratory, you can use the NOAA CRADA template along with a mutually agreed-upon statement of work to formalize the agreement.  Instructions for completing the CRADA are in NAO 201-103: Cooperative Research and Development and Invention Licensing Agreements.

If you have not yet identified a NOAA partner, you should first review our capabilities, labs and science centers, and open opportunities pages to locate areas of mutual interest and possible collaboration.  You can always contact this office at 301-713-3565 for information and additional help.