News story

Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund: tell us what to support

We are inviting ideas for the third wave of societal and industrial challenges to tackle as part of government's Industrial Strategy.

Dimitris Athanasiou and Guillem Singla Buxarrais of Neurofenix
Dimitris Athanasiou and Guillem Singla Buxarrais of Neurofenix, one of the businesses to get funding under the leading-edge healthcare challenge.

Innovate UK, on behalf of UK Research and Innovation, is inviting proposals on the potential future challenges to get support through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

Focus on one of the 4 grand challenges

The aim of this call is to identify the third wave of industry-led challenges in the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, which brings together the UK’s world-leading research with industry to tackle the biggest industrial and societal challenges of our time.

£1 billion has been allocated to the first wave of challenges. A further £725 million has been announced for wave 2, which will run in 2018 and 2019.

UK industry and research can submit proposals aligned clearly with at least one of the 4 grand challenges in government’s Industrial Strategy.

The grand challenges are:

  • artificial intelligence and the data economy
  • clean growth
  • the future of mobility
  • meeting the needs of an ageing society

The opportunity

Proposed challenges should combine the best ideas from academia and industry to create tangible benefits for the UK in productivity and economic growth.

Submitted proposals should either be drafted collaboratively by a consortium of industry and academia, or be able to provide evidence of an industry-wide requirement.

You will need to explain and evidence what the challenge is, the positive impact in addressing it, and the capabilities and strengths that we already have in the UK that would help us to become a world-leader in its research and commercialisation.

The challenge must:

  • be compelling, focused, understandable and have a real benefit if solved
  • be industry-led and in an area of existing strength
  • take advantage of the depth and expertise of UK research
  • offer a clear opportunity for sustainable growth, including global markets
  • evidence that government support is necessary and of strategic importance
  • increase productivity

Challenges can be of any size. You will be expected to propose the amount of funding required from government and from industry to address your proposal.

Expression of interest details

  • the expression of interest for challenges opens on 28 February 2018, and the deadline is 18 April 2018
  • consortiums must be led by a business or industry body. Members can be businesses, academic organisations, public sector bodies, or research and technology organisations
  • you may submit more than one challenge as long as these are innovative in their own rights and not interdependent
  • there will be a briefing event on 14 March 2018
  • at this stage we are interested in proposals for future challenges only. How funding competitions are run to solve the challenge and what form they take will be decided at a later date. We expect these to run in early 2019 and to start funding successful projects from April 2019
Published 28 February 2018