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The Sustainable Innovation Fund: Round 3

Project Size:
Up to £175,000


Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, is investing up to £10 million to fund single and collaborative research and development projects as part of the Sustainable Innovation Fund.

The aim of this competition is to help all sectors of the UK rebuild after the effects of COVID-19.

This competition is round 3 of 3.

There is no minimum or maximum total project size. Each organisation working alone or in a collaboration can claim grant up to a maximum of £175,000.


These grants are a form of state aid under the COVID-19 Temporary Framework for the UK.

Aid may be granted to organisations that were not in difficulty (within the meaning of Article 2(18) of the General Block Exemption Regulation) on 31 December 2019, but that faced difficulties or entered into difficulty thereafter as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. Micro and small companies are exempt from this test unless they:

  • Are in insolvency proceedings
  • Have received rescue aid that has not been repaid


  • Are subject to a restructuring plan under state aid rules

Each funded partner can claim up to 80% of their eligible project costs, up to a maximum of £175,000. This amount cannot exceed their cumulative aid total of 800,000 euros if they have received other funding as part of the COVID-19 Temporary Framework


COVID-19 has affected R&D across all sectors, and the aim of this competition is to help all sectors of the UK recover, grow and create new opportunities from the aftermath of the global health pandemic.

Your proposal must show evidence of key challenges as a direct consequence of COVID-19, including the sudden shortage or availability of finance, and how your project can help solve them.

In addition, your proposal must consider its impact on climate change and/or environmental sustainability.

Innovate UK would also like you to address where necessary equality, diversity, and inclusion in relation to your project, the partner organisations and your approach to innovation.

Your project can also focus on:

  • Decarbonisation, circular economy and/or biodiversity
  • Climate change and environmental sustainability
  • Geographic or regionally targeted innovation
  • Innovation that is aimed at commercial or residential users
  • Innovations that work across more than one sector
  • Follow-on international opportunities that help the UK lead the world

Innovate UK will not fund projects that:

  • Are not related to an impact on a business due to COVID-19 disruption
  • Have a negative impact on the environment and/or society
  • Have a detrimental effect on equality, diversity, and inclusion
  • Would duplicate other UK government activities or EU-funded initiatives already underway, such as the testing or manufacture of vaccines and ventilators
  • Do not involve any research and development or innovation, for example the creation of information-only websites
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