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r2p Incubator

Have an idea for a health or safety solution?

With the research-to-practice (r2p) incubator project, the Northeast Center wants to move ideas from the drawing board to widespread use, that reduce health and safety hazards in agriculture, forestry, and/or fishing (AgFF). We welcome ideas from farmers, loggers, commercial fishermen, researchers, and AgFF industry professionals.

How it Works

We’re providing two rounds of up to two years of funding ($10,000 per year = $20,000 total) and mentorship/training in development, networking, marketing, distribution, and more. In each round, we’re selecting one project. The program will help creative problem solvers bring clever technology, programs, or practices to the workplace that improve safety and/or health for farmers, loggers, or commercial fishermen.

We’ve assembled an amazing advisory board of experts (see below) in all aspects of r2p to provide the mentorship and training, which will also help expand the network of r2p practitioners and skills in AgFF communities. The two awardees will also receive additional resources and funding opportunities.

The application process for Round 1 was completed at the end of 2023, and the awardee will be working with us from 2024 to 2026.

Announcements about applications for Round 2 will go out in the summer of 2025. We’re already working with the advisory board members to improve the application process.

Round 1 Award Winner

Farrell Davis, deckhand on the sea scallop fishing vessel Small Stuff and research technologist with the Coonamessett Farm Foundation, is our first awardee. Farrell is interested in developing an ergonomic sea scallop shucking knife. He’ll be working closely with the r2p incubator team and advisory board to receive training, financial support, and mentorship to move his idea to practice.

Farrell Davis, Round 1 Award Winner from NEC's r2p Incubator

Meet our Team

Getting The Word Out

Pathway to Innovation in Occupational Health and Safety

1/8/2024 and 1/9/2024: Project Coordinator Liane Hirabayashi presented a poster and a talk about the incubator at the International Fishing Industry Health and Safety Conference in Rome, Italy.

Liane Hirbayashi presents at IFISH6 in Rome, IT - January 2024

View Poster

BeSafe International Farm Safety Conference

8/24/2023: Co-Investigator Pam Milkovich presented a talk about the incubator at the BeSafe International Farm Safety Conference in Dublin, Ireland.

NEC r2p Featured on "The Mason Mechanical Engineer"

8/19/2023: Incubator Chair Leigh McCue-Weil interviewed Principal Investigator Julie Sorensen about the incubator on George Mason University’s podcast “The Mason Mechanical Engineer”

Listen Here


Contact the Northeast Center r2p Incubator Team at or call 800-343-7527.