Earthquake rescuer

Building an ecosystem for responder innovations

A new innovation challenge for first responder technology has been announced by FirstNet, the Economic Development Administration and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

The Accelerate R2 Network Challenge will award $1 million in grants to create a nationwide network of organizations that support innovation, entrepreneurship and investment in response and resiliency technologies in the markets – the technology and equipment first responders use when disaster strikes --  as well as new ways to build, protect and connect networks and infrastructure to help communities recover and build readiness and resilience.

To connect stakeholders who can advance technologies used by first responders, EDA is making up to $750,000 available, and NIST is contributing up to $250,000 through its Public Safety Communications Research program. FirstNet will provide program support and technical assistance as needed.

“Never is the link between public safety response and economic impact more prevalent than during a disaster,” Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development John Fleming said. “The R2 Challenge will create new economic opportunities including jobs and private sector investment as well as increase resilience to future disasters.”

Responses are due March 11, 2020.

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