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A selection of funding opportunities for people working in industry


For further information, please follow the links to the external funding opportunity webpages.

BBSRC Future Leaders Fellowships

Deadline: 11 May 2017

Early career researchers who want to conduct their own independent research within a host laboratory. Applicants will have demonstrated high potential and have no more than five years of active postdoctoral research experience. The call is open to current PhD students who are expected to have completed their PhD viva exam prior to announcement of the awarded FLFs (30 November 2017). The FLF will support the transition of early stage researchers to fully independent research leaders. Awards are for three years and it is expected that up to 12 fellowships will be awarded, each of a value of up to £300k (80% fEC).

BBSRC David Phillips Fellowships

Deadline 11 May 2017

Aimed at researchers who want to establish their first independent research group undertaking a programme of excellent research. Applicants will be able to demonstrate great potential and have a scientific career showing a clear upward trajectory. Proposals can be submitted in any area of science within our remit. We particularly encourage applications that are aligned with our overarching strategic priorities. Awards are for five years, and include personal salary and a significant research support grant to enable fellows to establish their own independent research group. It is expected that up to five fellowships will be awarded, each at a value of up to £1M (80% fEC). In addition to this investment, it is also expected that a substantial demonstration of support for the fellow be made by the host Research Organisation.

BBSRC International Travel Award Scheme (ITAS)

Call status: Open

Application deadline: apply at any time (at least 6months before travel).

To help scientists add an international dimension to their BBSRC-funded research by making and establishing new contacts with international counterparts.

BBSRC Exploring Innovation Seminars

Call status: Open

Application deadline: apply at any time

BBSRC are supporting the delivery of events to facilitate discussion and improve awareness of knowledge exchange and commercialisation (KEC) of BBSRC-funded research. These events provide an opportunity for research organisations to showcase best practice in KEC and how this leads to economic and societal impact.

BBSRC Knowledge Transfer Partnerships


Call status: Open


Application deadline: apply at any time

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) accelerate business innovation by supporting knowledge exchange with academic institutions. KTP operates through an open call which includes the entirety of BBSRC's remit. As part of a UK-wide programme, these partnerships serve as a mechanism to transfer knowledge and to develop graduate and postgraduate personnel for industrial careers.

BBSRC seeks to promote KTP in industrial sectors that are able to benefit from the UK's excellent bioscience research base and encourages the appointment of KTP Associates at post-doctoral level.

STFC Rainbow Seed Fund

The Rainbow Seed Fund is an evergreen venture capital fund for some of the leading UK publicly funded research organisations. It is independently managed by Midven and provides capital to commercialise the partners’ research. The partners employ over 3,000 scientists, in fields including: Bioscience (non-medical), Medical (non-bioscience), Electronics/Telecoms/IT hardware, Informatics and software, Engineering/Physics, Chemistry, Materials and Environment. The annual research budget is in excess of £1.0bn with over 25 research institutes across the country, in addition to links with the European centres of CERN and ESA. The Fund makes individual investments of between £10,000 and £500,000 and helps to leverage additional human and financial capital over the lifetime of our investment.

STFC Follow-On Funding


Call status: Open
Application deadline:

  • Wednesday 3rd May 2017
  • Wednesday 13th September 2017

Follow-on Funding is intended to provide financial support at the very early or pre-seed stage of turning research outputs into a commercial proposition. Follow-On Funding will support a range of relevant activities to enable the development and examination of a concept to establish its commercial feasibility and scientific and technical merit.

STFC RSE/STFC Enterprise Fellowships


Call status: Open


Application deadline:

  • 26 April 2017
  • 1 November 2017

The STFC, along with the RSE (Royal Society of Edinburgh), offer support for STFC funded scientists who want to develop a business idea based on STFC funded research. The fellowship gives one year's salary and business training, to the Enterprise Fellow - the aim being to give someone the time and skills to set up a viable business as a result of the STFC science programme. Enterprise Fellowships are designed to encourage exploitation of the STFC research programme. Applications may be submitted on any subject provided that the original research or technological developments have their origin as part of a programme largely funded by STFC, or in the case of nuclear physics programme previously funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

STFC STFC Impact Acceleration Account - PilotSTFC Impact Acceleration Account - Pilot

STFC is launching a pilot call for an Impact Acceleration Account (IAA), which has been developed to provide flexible funding directly to the research organisation’s Knowledge Exchange (KE) / Technology Transfer (TT) Office (or equivalent) to support STFC-funded academics to take their ideas towards commercialisation, through activities not currently supported by an STFC funding programme. The programme will provide funds of £50,000 to organisations following assessment of applications.

Innovate UK Competitions

You can apply for funding 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. There is also an open programme that is not sector based.

Innovate UK Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI)

The Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) is a well established process to connect public sector challenges with innovative ideas from industry, supporting companies to generate economic growth and enabling improvement in achieving government objectives. SBRI provides innovative solutions to challenges faced by the public sector, leading to better public services and improved efficiency and effectiveness. It generates new business opportunities for companies, provides small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) a route to market for their ideas and bridges the seed funding gap experienced by many early stage companies. It supports economic growth and enables the development of innovative products and services through the public procurement of research and development (R&D).

Innovate UK Innovation Vouchers

Funding of £5k projects for SMEs in the area of Agri-food, Built Environment, to allow businesses to work with an external expert for the first time, gaining new knowledge to help businesses innovate, develop and grow.

Wellcome Trust Funding Schemes

A large number of science funding schemes, including schemes for collaboration with social sciences, humanities and arts are available from the Wellcome Trust.

Circular Economy Investment Fund


Call status: Open

Zero Waste Scotland is investing European Regional Development Funds to help small and medium businesses be resource efficient and create a more circular economy.

Finance for Welsh SMEs

Finance Wales makes commercial investments in small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) based in Wales or willing to relocate.

Resource Efficient Scotland SME Loans scheme

Funded by the Scottish Government, the Resource Efficient Scotland SME Loans scheme aims to support businesses that are looking to reduce costs through improved energy, material resource and water efficiency by providing an unsecured, interest free loan from £1,000 to £100,000.