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Department of Physics

The Cavendish Laboratory

Knowledge Transfer and Research Impact acceleration opportunities

University has a Pathways to Impact tool for helping with planning impact activities and writing about impact in research proposals:

To receive personalised funding alerts customised to your interests we recommend using Research Professional portal (click here to register - University of Cambridge only)

Some of the funding schemes are listed below:



  • Industrial CASE studentships - EPSRC funded 
  • University of Cambridge Impact Acceleration Account (applicants briefing presentation from 23 Oct 2015 is here)
    • Follow on Fundto support the early stage development of technology to make the idea more attractive for commercial investment.
    • Partnership Development Awardsto pump-prime collaborations with industry partners. 
    • Knowledge Transfer Fellowships fund a researcher or member of academic staff to undertake a placement within a UK business or other partner organisation for 3-12 months. Fellowships are also open to company employees to spend time working in a University department to facilitate knowledge transfer.
    • other case-by-case support: to discuss your enquiry please contact the Physics KTF.


  • STFC IPS (Innovations Partnership Scheme): up to £150k for up to 3 years for projects taking STFC-funded R&D up the TRLs. Needs industry supporter(s) and potential route to market. Please email Michael for deadlines and support. See AccelRT example. Also Follow on Fund, up to £110k for up to 12 months.
  • STFC Global Challenge Schemes (Exploratory, Concepts and Networks). Please contact Michael.
  • STFC IAA (Impact Acceleration Account), internal call from Cambridge Enterprise. Up to £25k for proof-of-concept, market report etc to take STFC R&D closer to potential commercialisation. Currently closed.
  • STFC Enterprise Fellowships are designed to enable an individual to advance the commercialisation of existing research results or technological developments.  Tenable for a period of one year, the Fellowships enable the holder to concentrate on developing the commercial potential of STFC funded research, whilst also receiving formal training in relevant business skills. Available on an annual basis with a closing date in the Spring for Fellowships starting in October.

    innovate UK (formerly TSB):

    • Knowledge Transfer Partnerships: A KTP is a three-way innovation project between an academic, a business and a high-calibre, recently qualified person (known as the Associate), aimed at facilitating the transfer of knowledge and skills mobility. It provides company-based training for graduates in order to enhance their business and specialist skills. Duration: 6-36 months.
    • Guidance on applications - innovate UK Funding Rules video and Application Process video (including criteria for a good innovate UK project).

    The Royal Society:

    • Brian Mercer Feasibility Award - This scheme is for scientists who wish to investigate the feasibility of commercialising an aspect of their research. Up to £30k, up to 12 months. Rolling call.

    • Brian Mercer Award for Innovation - This scheme is for scientists who wish to develop an already proven concept or prototype into a near-market product ready for commercial exploitation. Up to £250k, up to 24 months duration. Currently closed.

    • Industry Fellowship - This scheme is for academic scientists who want to work on a collaborative project with industry and for scientists in industry who want to work on a collaborative project with an academic organisation.

    • Pairing scheme - This scheme builds bridges between Parliamentarians, Civil Servants and some of the best research scientists in the UK.

    Royal Academy of Engineering:

    • The Royal Academy of Engineering, in association with the ERA Foundation, invites nominations for its entrepreneurs award. This seeks to identify, encourage and reward engineering researchers in the field of electro-technology who are at an early stage in their career (students at, or working for, universities in the UK) and may be individuals or a small team. The winner or winners will receive a personal prize of £10,000, plus a further £30,000 to invest in the development of their winning idea. Up to three runners-up will receive separate awards. Closing date: 2 November 2015


    • £750,000 competition announced to help students with clever ideas - StudentshIP Enterprise Awards will provide funding, ranging from £10,000 up to £100,000, for university projects that bring enterprising students, businesses, and their local community together to work on innovative projects. In-house projects or collaborations with other universities or businesses that create, manage or exploit intellectual property will all be considered. Deadline passed 12 December 2014


    For customised funding alerts we recommend use of the Research Professional portal (see Knowledge Exchange page for links).


    Please feel free to get in touch with the Knowledge Exchange team for further advice.