Innovate UK – Current Funding Opportunities

Do you want to work with industry to test the feasibility of your idea, research and develop it and demonstrate it in a prototype.

Innovate UK funding competitions cover the following industry sectors:

  • emerging and enabling technologies
  • infrastructure systems
  • health and life sciences
  • manufacturing and materials

Some of the current funding calls include:

  • vaccines for global epidemics – preclinical
  • improving care for stroke patients
  • innovation in health and life science
  • GPs practices of the future
  • Managing sickness absence
  • Cell and gene therapies for industrila manufacture
  • Using technology to improeve dermatology

For further details see the Innovate UK website.


ISBE Research and Knowledge Exchange Fund Call for Applications 2015

73b6ee4768b2e19881e0ff6924ba4dbf-bpfullThe Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ISBE) Research and Knowledge Exchange Fund has launched its 2015 call for applications. The fund is an initiative supported by the ESRC, Lloyds Banking Group, the Federation of Small Business (FSB) and the British Academy of Management (BAM). It is administered through ISBE and aims to encourage and support research activities from academics, third sector organisations, consultants and practitioners to generate an entrepreneurial community of practice to facilitate knowledge exchange and transfer.

The call is open to collaborative bids. The Principal Investigator must be employed by a UK institution although international teams are encouraged as are collaborations which support capacity-building between experienced and early career academics.

Proposals that explore ways in which anchor institutions i.e. organisations that make a strategic contribution to the local economy (e.g. LEPs, Enterprise Zones, HEIs, Growth Hubs) and wider fee-based professional service providers can support small firms to develop their entrepreneurial capabilities and vice versa.

Three grants are expected to be awarded of between £8000 – £12, 000 each. All proposals must clearly demonstrate and describe relevance to the notion of knowledge transfer and exchange related to the context of the bid.

The closing date for applications is 17.00 p.m. Friday 14th August 2015. Further information is available from the ISBE website.



Horizon 2020 Overview

Horizon 2020 logoOn Wednesday 11 September Emma Carey the university’s UK Research Office representative visited to give us an overview of Horizon 2020, the Commission’s new research and innovation programme.

Horizon 2020 is a 70.2 billion programme for research and innovation commencing in January 2014. The programme is organised under 3 ‘pillars’:

  • Excellent Science: Marie Curie Fellowships, European Research Council, Future and Emerging Technologies (responsive mode funding)
  • Industrial Leadership: Innovation in SMEs, Access to Risk Finance, Leadership and Industrial Techologies (innovation and enterprise funding)
  • Societal Challenges: Seven cross-disciplinary challenges addressing major concerns shared by all European citizens (multi-partner research networks involving a range of stakeholders)

Copies of Emma’s slides are available for Northumbria staff at:


Research for the Benefit of SMEs – Project Workshop 17th September

Your research could meet the needs of SMEs

Research for the Benefit of SMEs is a European funding programme with a budget of €250M which supports research and technological development to meet the needs of SMEs across Europe. This is done by subcontracting research and development activities to RTD performers (e.g. universities).

It is a “bottom up” opportunity, which means that any research discipline is eligible for funding as long as it meets an SME need and provides an economic benefit for the companies involved. Projects typically involve between 5-10 partners across Europe, with at least 3 SMEs and 2 RTD performers. They usually have a duration of 1-2 years and have a budget of between €500K-€1.5M each. The deadline for the current round is November 15th 2012.

Sounds good. How do I find out more?

Research and Business Services have organised a project workshop on Research for SMEs on Monday 17th September between 10am and 2.30pm. It will take place in the auditorium on the ground floor of MEA House. To book a place please contact Emma Lindsay.

At this workshop Steve Bradley (the UK’s national contact point for Research for SMEs) and Stuart Jackson (from Enterprise Europe Network) will discuss the opportunities available, how to find partners and outline what you need to do to secure funding. Attendance is strongly encouraged to find out about the call and to take advantage of the support available to you. Further information is available in the workshop invitation [.docx].

What support is available to help me find partners and develop the bid?

Northumbria is making available funding and a support team to help you put together a proposal targeting this scheme. This includes:

  • Funding for a PhD or postdoc to co-write the application with your input
  • Buy-out of academic staff time to supervise proposal development
  • An external consultant to provide detailed bid guidance and mentoring throughout the bid development process
  • A joint RBS/Faculty team to coordinate partner searches, manage proposal development, internal approval, electronic submission
  • Travel funding (if necessary) for a partner meeting in Europe

This support will be available to help develop 3-4 proposals for the scheme with good potential. For this call it is available for proposals involving staff from the Faculty of Engineering and Environment. Find out more by coming along to the workshop.


Workshop on Catapults, Local Enterprise Partnerships, and Research Data

The Modern Universities Research Group is advertising a workshop on Catapult Centres, Local Enterprise Partnerships and Data Usage in Research. The event takes place at Goodenough College, London on Friday 28th September. You can find more information and book at the link below:

MURG September Workshop

Topics and speakers include: Innovation projects for SMEs (Chris Birch, University of Greenwich), Best practice for data sharing (Veerle Van Den Eyden, UK Data Archive), and the High Value Manufacturing Catapult Centre (Nigel Perry, Centre for Process Innovation).

Although Northumbria University is not a member of MURG, non-members can still attend for an additional fee.


Internationalisation of Small Businesses: Research and Knowledge Exchange Fund

The Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ISBE) has announced the latest round of its Research and Knowledge Exchange Fund.

A partnership between ISBE, Barclays, ESRC and the National Council for Graduate Entrepreneurship, the fund aims to bring together academics with the third sector, consultants and practitioners to generate an entrepreneurial community of research practice. ISBE typically grants awards between £10,000 and £12,000 on a non-FEC basis. Applications for over £12,000 will not be funded, but smaller seed-corn applications will be considered. The deadline for this round is 5pm, Friday 15th June 2012, with notification of awards by mid-September.

This year’s call is focused on exploring the processes and possibilities of small business (SME) internationalisation:

There is a growing focus and interest upon the process of small firm internationalisation which includes ‘born globals’ and those firms tentatively seeking export opportunities.  Axiomatically, smaller firms face a range of challenges related to resource accrual and management when entering international markets …  It would appear that internationalisation is an attractive option for SMEs in terms of potential returns but developing appropriate contacts, networks, resources, managerial capabilities and strategic partnerships is challenging.  Accordingly, we invite proposals which investigate and analyse any aspect of the SME internationalisation process and specifically, any knowledge exchange and transfer issues.