This is a Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) competition funded by UKRI. The aim of the competition is to fund organisations to deliver social impact and address one or more of the 7 themes of the Healthy Ageing Challenge Framework.

UKRI will award up to £4 million inclusive of VAT across 2 strands. These are:

  1. Healthy Ageing Social Ventures Feasibility Studies for projects with costs up to £50,000 (this strand)
  2. Healthy Ageing Social Ventures industrial research (click here for details) for projects with costs from £50,000 to £150,000 for prototype development and evaluation

This is phase 1 of a potential 2-phase competition. A decision to proceed with phase 2 will depend on the outcomes from phase 1, availability of further funding and assessment of a separate application into a subsequent phase 2 competition. Only successful applicants from phase 1 will be able to apply to take part in phase 2.

Any adoption and implementation of a solution from this competition would be subject to a separate, possible competitive, procurement exercise. This competition does not cover the purchase of any solution.

Projects must:

  • start by 1 March 2022
  • end by 28 February 2023
  • have total eligible project costs up to £50,000 inclusive of VAT

Projects can last up to 12 months.

To lead a project, you must:

  • be an organisation of any size
  • work alone or with other organisations as subcontractors
  • exist wholly to provide benefits for society
  • have stated commitment to social outcomes for an identified set of beneficiaries related to your social or environmental mission
  • have objects in your constitutional documents, which form a constitutional lock, that protect your social or environmental mission
  • have a policy to distribute profits after tax so surpluses are used to achieve social or environmental impacts

Organisations can apply for a share of up to £1 million, inclusive of VAT. In this strand, feasibility studies contracts will be awarded up to £50,000 inclusive of VAT, for each project up to 12 months.

Research and development

Your application must have at least 50% of the contract value attributed directly and exclusively to research and development (R&D) services, including solution exploration and design. R&D can also include prototyping and field-testing the product or service. This lets you incorporate the results of your exploration and design and demonstrate that you can produce in quantity to acceptable quality standards.

R&D does not include:

  • commercial development activities such as quantity production
  • supply to establish commercial viability or to recover R&D costs
  • integration, customisation or incremental adaptations and improvements to existing products or processes

The aim of this competition is to enable businesses with a social purpose to develop and deliver innovative products and services.

Your project must:

  • address one or more of the 7 themes identified by the Healthy Ageing Challenge Framework to support people as they age
  • identify a clear route to market, scalability and sustainability for your product or service
  • have a clearly identified and existing lead customer
  • demonstrate the technical, development and market feasibility of your proposed innovation
  • describe how your innovation is addressing critical social or environmental challenges
  • demonstrate a causal link between your business activities and achievement of your declared social or environmental impact
  • describe how all social impact will be measured, evidenced, and reported
  • outline your commitment to specific social outcomes, clearly identifying beneficiaries related to your social or environmental mission
  • explain how any profits after tax will be distributed so surpluses are used to achieve future social or environmental impacts
  • establish ongoing collaboration between all members of the project team
  • formalise any required ethical approvals, data sharing agreements and contracts

Products and services benefitting the general public must be accessible without restrictions and barriers such as affordability.

You must demonstrate a credible and practical route to market, so your application must include a plan to commercialise your results.

Specific themes

Your project can focus on one or more of the following 7 themes from the Healthy Ageing Challenge Framework:

  • living well with cognitive impairment
  • sustaining physical activity
  • maintaining health at work and work in later life
  • managing the common complaints of ageing
  • design for age-friendly homes
  • creating healthy active places
  • supporting social connections

Feasibility studies

This means planned research or critical investigation to gain new knowledge and skills for developing new products, processes or services.

An online briefing event will be held via Zoom at 2.30pm on Tuesday 3rd August: click here for a joining link.

If you want help with connecting to others in the sector, contact KTN’s Health team.