A Transition Plan is a document that represents an agreement between clearly identified researchers and potential recipients, organizations, or other users of the product resulting from the transition of an R&D output. Transition Plans include general information about the project and a proposed process for how it can most efficiently be integrated into operations or other applications. Early (and often) coordination during a project allows for researchers, developers, and operators to identify both the potentials for success and possible limitations of both the new technologies/ideas and the existing operational framework, and strategize a connection between the two.
Per NOAA Policy, a Transition Plan should:
A Transition Plan should NOT:
An R&D project funded through a WPO program will have one or more Point of Contact (POC) at the organization proposed to receive the transition. For example, for projects intending to transition output to the National Weather Service (NWS), the receiving office will most often be from an NCEP operational center or Headquarters office. Principal Investigators (PIs) of WPO projects are responsible for coordinating the development of a Transition Plan with their POC. The PI will provide information about the project and its milestones and ultimate goals. The POC is expected to provide input about the technical and financial requirements and limitations for completing the proposed transition.
A complete transition plan should include the following sections:
NOAA transition plans must ultimately be signed by the Assistant Administrator (AA) and Line Office Transition Manager (LOTM) of the affected Line Offices. WPO manages a process to ensure that draft plans submitted by the PI and POC are sufficiently reviewed and vetted by technical experts prior to LOTM and AA review. At any point in the approval process, the PI and POC may be asked to provide edits or responses to specific concerns.
Reviewers may include:
The PI is responsible for submitting an unsigned draft transition plan to their funding program within (at most) six months from the project start date. WPO will then coordinate the review process and collection of signatures. A completed transition plan will include signatures from:
For additional information on transition plans, visit the NOAA Research Council website on the Policy on Research and Development Transitions.
NOAA Research Council has also made available several example transition plans.
A sample Transition Plan Template is available for download here. This template is designed for projects in the Joint Technology Transfer Initiative (JTTI) program, but the format is similar for all WPO programs. However, since each program may require unique information in their transition plans, please check with your specific program’s management team for a template specific to your program.
JTTI Transition Plan Template
Main Transitions Page
Main WPO Page