ONAMI is Oregon’s first “signature research center” (SRC)—an academic, business, and government collaboration to grow research volume and commercialization in the broad area of nano- and micro-scale science and engineering. First established in 2003 as a pilot for the SRC concept developed by the Oregon Council for Knowledge and Economic Development, ONAMI is now an initiative of the Oregon Innovation Council and operates under an administrative services contract with the Oregon Business Development Department.

Since 2003, we have received a cumulative state investment of $42M, which has been used for strategic investments in facilities and equipment at partner universities in the Oregon University System, supplemental matching funds for R&D projects undertaken by our 250 member researchers, and “gap” grants to startup companies with high growth potential working with our member researchers and affiliated user facilities.

Our belief, increasingly borne out in public data (patents, per capita industry R&D, small business intensity) is that Oregon’s past, present, and future economic welfare, like that of the entire U.S., is dependent on pioneering innovation in energy, medicine, information technology, and other high-value sectors enabled by materials science and advanced components.

“The major differentiator for the ONAMI family is the “can do” or “just do it” attitude. I have never encountered anything like this before in academia in 35 years of work in R&D management.” Dr. J.T. Adrian Roberts, Battelle Memorial Institute.