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Funding Competitions – Extra cash available for Technology Innovation, Infrastructure Systems and Industrial Waste Challenge in India

This month and next, there are numerous opportunities for extra funding to bring to your attention.


*** Cutting-edge technology innovation

Businesses can apply for a share of £15 million to support disruptive innovation in any technology area with potential to generate growth.

Innovate UK has up to £15 million for game-changing, cutting-edge or disruptive innovation projects that lead to new products, processes or services.

The open programme
This funding is part of a regular series of open competitions that support good ideas with market potential, no matter where they come from.

Projects can come from any technology, science, engineering or industrial area. They can fit in with any of Innovate UK’s priority sectors – emerging and enabling technologies, health and life sciences, infrastructure systems, and manufacturing and materials – or be outside.

Funding is available for a wide range of projects, from feasibility studies to experimental development that is closer to market.

Priority will be given to proposals that are likely to lead to sustainable growth in productivity or develop products and services that will access new markets overseas. All projects should demonstrate the potential to generate commercial impact and economic growth.

Competition information

  • the competition is open, and the deadline for registration is 9 August 2017
  • projects must be led by a business, either working alone or with partners
  • total project costs can range between £25,000 and £1 million, and projects can last between 6 and 36 months
  • businesses could attract up to 70% of their eligible costs, depending on their size and the type of project
  • only one project application may be submitted per applicant per competition round


*** Infrastructure systems – round 3

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £15 million to develop innovative solutions to challenges in infrastructure systems.

Competition open date: Monday 10 July 2017
Competition closes: Wednesday 13 September 2017 12:00pm

Innovate UK is to invest up to £15 million in projects in this competition. This is to stimulate innovation that creates UK business growth in infrastructure systems. They want businesses to collaborate to develop new integrated solutions and business models.

Projects will range in size from total project costs of £25,000 to £5 million and must last between 3 months and 3 years.

Projects must show significant innovation in one of Innovate UK priority areas:

  • smart infrastructure
  • energy
  • connected transport
  • urban living

Proposals must improve business growth, productivity and/or create export opportunities for at least one UK small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) involved in the project.

There is up to £5 million for projects that last from 3 months to 1 year.

There is up to £10 million for projects lasting from 1 year to 3 years, with costs between £100,000 and £5 million inclusive.


*** Newton Bhabha UK–India Industrial Waste Challenge 2017

UK organisations can apply for a share of £8 million to work with Indian partners on biotechnology solutions for industrial waste challenges in India.

Competition open date: Monday 5 June 2017
Registration closes: Wednesday 11 October 2017 12.00pm

Innovate UK and Research Councils, the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), are investing up to £8 million in projects that use cutting-edge solutions to reduce industrial waste in India.

The aim of this competition is to encourage partnerships between the UK and India. Innovate UK, the Research Councils and the Government of India’s Department of Biotechnology (DBT) are funding this competition as part of the Newton Bhabha Fund.

Projects should address reducing industrial waste and pollution, and improve value recovery from waste using biotechnology in one or more of these 5 sectors:

  • leather/tanning/textiles
  • municipal solid waste
  • paper and pulp
  • sewage
  • sugar cane


The total project grant will not exceed £2 million per project for UK partners. Match funding will be made available for Indian project partners by the Government of India. Projects should last between 30 months and 3 years.

Projects must include one UK business and one UK higher education institution or research council institute eligible for BBSRC/EPSRC funding. You also need to partner with one Indian academic institution or research organisation. Preference will be given to project consortia that also include an Indian business partner or an Indian urban or other local government body, who would be the end user of the proposed solution.

Additional UK and Indian businesses, research and academic partners are allowed. Either a business or a research organisation (including but not limited to UK higher education institutions or research council institutes) can lead the project in the UK. Only Indian academic institutions or research organisations can lead the project in India.


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