NJ’s proposal aims to revive emerging tech companies


New tech companies may soon be enticed to head to New Jersey in a recently proposed project bill which seeks to provide funding through an innovation partnership initiative.

The initiative would allocate funds to other nonprofit partnerships to promote the growth of emerging technologies within the state, according to MP Andrew Zwicker.

It would also focus on supporting technology companies run by minorities and women to diversify the state’s current technological environment.

“A few years ago, the New Jersey Commission on Science, Innovation and Technology was reinstated to reinvigorate New Jersey’s innovation economy, ”Zwicker said. “Through this commission, we have been able to create a permanent innovation fund to provide funding to businesses and nonprofits looking to create innovation hubs within the state. “

Companies eligible for funding under the partnership include advanced computing, cybersecurity, financial information technology, biotechnology, carbon footprint reduction technology, electronic device technology, communications technology, information, life sciences, agriculture, aviation, medical device technology, mobile communications technology, renewable energy technology or any field determined by the commission.

Once approved, companies should meet the following criteria: provide and serve as a channel for public and private capital at an early stage and at a later stage for emerging technology companies; provide training or technical assistance to help emerging technology companies apply for federal programs; and establish and administer a research grant fund for economic impact evaluations of technological development projects carried out by private or public higher education institutions which apply for grants through the commission.

“When you look at the history of innovation in New Jersey, you first think of Thomas Edison and the light bulb or Einstein,” Zwicker said. “Over time, the state’s history of innovation faded away with the rise of Silicon Valley.

As this decline has occurred, he said, the state has relied on private technology companies to boost its innovation economy, hence a limited need for public funds. to drive innovation in New Jersey.

Fast forward to now, he said, the biggest challenge is getting support for this long-term investment from a political perspective.

“The policy deals with very tight deadlines,” Zwicker said. “So that’s the challenge that awaits us right now, to have enough support. ”

Katya Maruri is a writer for Government Technology. She holds a BA in Journalism and an MA in Global Strategic Communications from Florida International University, and over five years of experience in the print and digital information industry.

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