NSRI's Story

In 2012, the University of Nebraska was designated as a Department of Defense (DoD) University Affiliated Research Center with core competencies identified to deter, counter and defend against national security threats.

To accomplish this mission, NU developed the National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI), which is dedicated to supporting national interests and strategies by providing the DoD and other federal agencies with evolutionary and revolutionary solutions to the dangerous and evolving national security threats and their potential impacts to warfighters and civilians. Read more about us.

NSRI, a 501(c)(3) organization, has been awarded more than $160 million of work through 108 contracts and grants. NSRI achieved 52% revenue growth this past year — from $12,147,386 in 2018 to $18,454,560 in 2019.

Benefits of doing business with NSRI

  • Comprehensive knowledge of sponsors’ requirements and problems
  • Broad access to information, including proprietary data
  • Broad corporate knowledge
  • Independency and objectivity
  • Quick response capability
  • Current operational experience
  • Freedom from real and/or perceived conflicts of interest

Learn more via the DoD UARC Management Plan.

John Tencer, MBA
NSRI Director of Business Operations
Connect with John


As a UARC, NSRI accesses an Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract vehicle through USSTRATCOM that shortens the timeline from identification of need to contract award and creates trusted, collaborative relationships.


NSRI also accepts funding from direct contracting vehicles, other transaction agreements, cooperative agreements and grants.



  • Legally allowed to be sole sourced under authority of 10 U.S.C. 2304(c)(3)(b)
  • 5-year contract (base + 4 option years)
  • Current contract period of performance 5 April 2018 thru 4 April 2023 (task orders can extend through 4 April 2025)
  • Maximum ceiling of $92m
  • CICA-3 exempt for sole source funding
  • MIPR of funds possible through relationship with STRATCOM


Other funding mechanisms

  • Direct contracts
  • Other Transaction Agreements
  • Cooperative Agreements
  • Government Purchase Card
  • Authorization, Agreement and Certification of Training (SF-182) vGrants

Integrated team process

To reduce contracting cycle time and rework while fulfilling the requirements that support the mission, NSRI works with key partners in an integrated team process that establishes an open, effective line of communication.

Commitment: Obtain and maintain senior management support and approval to empower ITP team members to make real-time decisions. 

Communication: Open, two-way communication to identify issues early and ensure joint understanding of requirements.

Cooperation: Promote teamwork to build trust and confidence.

UARC Contracting Processes

Available Courses

3-Step IDIQ Contracting Process

Our Integrated Team Process significantly reduces the contracting timeline and increases responsiveness to requirements.


  • ◆ ■   Identify requirements and budget
  • ◆ ■   Draft PWS through collaborative process
  •       Commit Funding
  •       Create Independent Government Estimate
  •        Identify Contracting Officer Representative (COR)
  •     ■   Draft Proposal


  • ◆ ■ ●   Formal PWS review
  •        ●  Release of RFP
  •     ■     Proposal Submission


  • ◆    ●  Preform technical and cost analysis
  • ◆        COR training
  •        ●  Contact team reviews
  •    ■  ●  Negotiations
  •        ●  Process Award Documentation


◆ Requesting Sponsor


● 55th Contracting Squadron

USSTRATCOM facilitates and assists throughout the process.

Establish a direct sole-source contract with NSRI

Government agencies may desire a direct contract, single task or IDIQ, with our Institute to:

  • Directly manage the contract process. In this case, the tasking sponsor has more control over the timing of processing tasking requirements to NSRI.
  • Create a statement of work that matches precisely with sponsor requirements.
  • Make DD-254 security specifications match precisely with sponsor requirements.
  • Avoid a processing fee for placing work under the contract.
  • Allow use of their contract by other agencies for a fee.

Steps to establish a direct sole-source contract

  • Government prepares an acquisition plan in accordance with FAR and, if applicable, as required by DFARS 207.1.
  • Government prepares a sole-source Justification and Approval (J&A) using CICA 3 (FAR 6.302-3). Levels of approvals are specified in FAR 6.304.
  • If Maintenance of Essential Capabilities (CICA 3) is the basis for award, Market Research, including FedBizOpps announcements, is not a legal or regulatory requirement (note: but may still be an agency practice).
  • Government posts the approved J&A in FedBizOpps for 14 days.
  • Government issues a sole-source solicitation to NSRI and NSRI submits a proposal in response.
  • Government evaluates NSRI’s proposal.
  • Government and NSRI agree on contract terms.
  • Government announces contract award (note: required for DoD awards of $7M and above).
  • Contract awarded.

Download and print the complete NSRI contracting and business process via pdf.

Interested in working with one of the leading research institutions for national security?

As USSTRATCOM’s University Affiliated Research Center (UARC), the National Strategic Research Institute at the University of Nebraska provides an invaluable understanding of strategic deterrence and CBRNE-related requirements gaps. Our Institute’s rapid-response capabilities can help meet your research and solutions needs. Connect with us to find out what we can accomplish together.

Business Process