FAST programs aim to contribute to the advancement of science and technology in Armenia from the perspective of an ecosystem that stands on three main pillars: Education, Research, and Commercialization. Science, as a body of knowledge, is preserved by Education, extended by Research, and exerted by Commercialization. These elements are the main drivers of the science ecosystem development, with that FAST designs and deploys programs across these three domains.
The organization launched its first program in October 2017 to support the local research community and bridge it with the world-leading research centers. Since then, FAST has provided funding to 43 researchers in the scope of 21 international research collaboration programs and hosted nearly 100 foreign researchers in Armenia. FAST also supported the next generation of researchers by granting full fellowships to the top 19 Ph.D. students in STEM fields, with further endeavors to enhance their academic and research capacities. In 2020, FAST has launched the ADVANCE STEM Research Grant Program which serves as a platform aimed to bring top-notch expertise in the targeted STEM-related fields in Armenia. These programs serve as a base for building comprehensive solutions that will serve as catalyzers of advancing science in Armenia.
Acknowledging the significance of transferring the technology to foster innovation, FAST established an Advanced Solutions Center (ASCENT), a multifunctional platform for science-intensive ventures’ origination and development. ASCENT explores and creates advanced solutions using Artificial Intelligence and Biotechnologies and eventually spin-off companies. To support science- and technology-backed startups, in 2018 FAST has initiated the formation of the Science and Technology Angels Network that gathers 26 individual investors from around the globe who invest in Armenian seed-stage startups. Through its entrepreneurial projects and acceleration programs, FAST has affected more than 200 startups and budding entrepreneurs and has been boosting the creation of science- and technology-backed startups in Armenia.