The SERC is a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC). UARCs are strategic United States Department of Defense (DoD) research centers associated with one or more universities. UARCs were established to ensure defense critical engineering and technology capabilities are maintained and advanced. Collaboration with university educational and research resources is essential to their mission. These not- for-profit organizations maintain long-term strategic relationships with their DoD sponsors and operate in the public interest, free from real or perceived conflicts of interest.
Although UARCs receive sole source funding, they may also, in some circumstances, compete for science and technology work. There are currently 15 DoD UARCS.
Characteristics of the UARC-DoD Relationship:
- Responsiveness to evolving requirements
- Comprehensive knowledge of sponsor requirements and problems
- Broad access to information, including proprietary data
- Broad corporate knowledge
- Independence and objectivity
- Quick response capability
- Current operational experience
- Freedom from real and/or perceived conflicts of interest