Innovate UK: helping innovative businesses succeed

Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, the new organisation that will ensure the UK maintains its world leading position in research and innovation. The government has set an ambition for the UK to become the most innovative country in the world, and as part of the modern Industrial Strategy, has committed to raise investment in research and development (R&D) to 2.4% of GDP by 2027. Much of the increased investment will need to come from the private sector – industry and investors.

Innovate UK is focused on accelerating business growth through innovation and is ideally placed to support that investment; they are agile and have industry and research expertise across all sectors, so the sharing of ideas and supporting emerging opportunities comes naturally.

Innovate UK will manage over £1.1 billion in grant funding in 2018/19, 26% of this on behalf of other organisations. Grants vary in size according to business need; they are typically for projects lasting between 1 to 3 years and between £50,000 and £2 million.

The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) is an ambitious programme led by UK Research and Innovation and delivered by Innovate UK and the research councils. It brings together world-class UK research with business investment to tackle the major industrial and societal challenges facing the UK. It will develop technologies that will transform existing industries and create new ones.

It addresses the 4 Grand Challenges set out in the government’s Industrial Strategy:

  • AI and data economy to put the UK at the forefront of the artificial intelligence and data revolution.
  • Future of mobility to become a world leader in shaping the future of mobility.
  • Clean growth to maximise the advantages for UK industry from the global shift to clean growth.
  • Ageing society to harness the power of innovation to help meet the needs of an ageing society.

Grants are offered through the Innovate UK open programme, which supports innovative UK businesses of any size and from any sector. Innovative ideas can come from any technology or industry, so the open programme complements the industry-focused funding available through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

For more information, check out the brochure.

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