Smithsonian Small Business Policies and Procedures

Supplier Diversity Program


The Smithsonian, through the use of the Supplier Diversity Program is dedicated to promoting small businesses and historically underutilized small businesses (HUSBs) to the maximum extent practicable. The policy, which must be followed by all Smithsonian staff, states the following:

"To the maximum extent practicable, and within the context of the Institution's procurement policies and contracting needs, small businesses and historically underutilized small businesses (HUSBs) shall be provided opportunities to compete for and, as appropriate, be awarded Smithsonian procurements and contracts for which they qualify and are able to meet performance requirements."


The Secretary of the Smithsonian is supportive of the Supplier Diversity Program.  Each fiscal year, they sign the Supplier Diversity Program Policy Statement that outlines and highlights their commitment to diversity and using small businesses in our procurements and business relationships.  Our current policy statement informs the public and Smithsonian staff that:

"The policy of the Smithsonian is to promote, increase, and improve the participation of small and historically underutilized small businesses in our business relationships. Diverse businesses add value to our projects and programs and help us meet our strategic goals. Everyone involved in procuring goods or services has a responsibility to achieve supplier diversity spending targets. Supplier diversity should continue to be a priority consideration for all those involved in procuring goods and services."


Another method in our policies to ensure that the Smithsonian's procurement awards are diverse and to help the Smithsonian meed and exceed its 23% small business goal, is the Smithsonian's dollar threshold policy.

The policy states that: All Smithsonian purchases not subject to an exclusion greater that $10,000 but less than $100,000 should be set aside exclusively for small business concerns unless the delegated procurement officer determines there is not a reasonable expectation of obtaining offers from two or more responsible small business concerns that are competitive in terms of market prices, quality, quantity, and delivery.


An understanding of the Smithsonian's procurement process helps suppliers develop effective strategies to avoid mistakes that could prove costly.  Many of the procurement procedures are similar to those use by federal agencies. To learn more about the Smithsonian's procurement process, please click here


The Smithsonian prefers to contract with small businesses whenever possible. Therefore, the Smithsonian has instituted the following initiatives to ensure that our staff utilizes small business vendors whenever possible.

Procurement Officials can use these types of vehicles to help their units meet their small business goals:

  • Supplier Diversity Policies
  • Smithsonian Institution Forecast of Procurement Opportunities
  • Small Business Set-Aside and Sole Source Programs
  • Small Business IDIQ List
  • Mandatory Small Business Purchase Thresholds
  • Subcontracting Goals for Large Contracts

In short, using small businesses makes good business sense for the Smithsonian and or the business community. 

Contact Us

Please send comments and questions to:

600 Maryland Ave., SW 
Suite 7078 MRC 521
P.O. Box 37012
Washington, D.C. 2013-7012
​Telephone: 202.633.6430