Aged between 18 and 30 years old and looking to turn your innovative idea into a reality? You've come to the right place.

Business in Britain is changing. Over the next 3 years, Innovate UK has allocated £2.2 million to help young people develop their innovative ideas and drive positive and meaningful change.

The Young Innovators programme, which includes annual awards for young people with creative and ground-breaking business ideas and a high-profile #IdeasMeanBusiness campaign, is a partnership between Innovate UK and the Prince’s Trust. For the 2021/22 cohort, Innovate UK has also partnered with the Cardiff Capital Region as part of its commitment to increase its impact by working with key regional stakeholders.

So far, 151 inspiring young people have received Young Innovators awards and 12,000 young people have engaged with the #IdeasMeanBusiness campaign.

By 2023, the programme will award more than 200 young people from diverse backgrounds with a £5,000 grant, one-on-one business coaching, and an allowance to cover their living costs.

It recognises young people from across Britain and from diverse backgrounds who have great business ideas and the potential to become future leaders in innovation.

Diversity & Inclusion in Innovation

The Young Innovators programme recognises young people from diverse backgrounds located all over Britain who have great business ideas and the potential to become future leaders in innovation.

Diversity and inclusion are at the heart of the Young Innovators programme which forms an integral part of Innovate UK’s 2021-2025 Plan for Action for UK Business Innovation and its commitment to “increase the diversity of upcoming innovation talent and make innovation support more visible, accessible, and inclusive to all.”

Young Innovators Awards 2021/22 Winners: Young people creating a better world

 

We’re proud to announce the winners of this year’s Young Innovators’ Award! From a device that keeps patients’ muscles working when on a ventilator to avoid muscle wastage, to a washing machine that re-uses shower water, to 3D printed knee replacements, they look to tackle some of our biggest environmental and societal challenges.

Over the past couple of years, the pandemic has significantly impacted young people due to well documented challenges such as disrupted education, declining mental health, and delayed careers. However, it also triggered a surge in entrepreneurialism, resulting in a third of 18 to 34-year-olds wanting to launch an independent enterprise.

This appetite for innovation can also be seen in the unprecedented engagement with the Young Innovators Awards, which received 1,300 applications over the past two years.

Following a rigorous assessment process, 63 Young Innovators were awarded and now form the 2021/22 cohort.

Read about all 63 Young Innovators in our brochure.

Young Innovators Awards 2022/23 

Innovate UK’s Young Innovators Awards 2022/23 will award at least 32 people from diverse backgrounds with a £5,000 grant, one-on-one business coaching, and an allowance to cover their living costs.

The competition is currently closed but you can find out further information on the focus of the Awards and key dates here or by watching last year’s briefing event.

#IdeasMeanBusiness Webinar Series

The #IdeasMeanBusiness webinar series has been designed to provide practical advice, expert knowledge, and tools for young people. It aims to enable entrepreneurship and innovation among young people to help them bring more diverse ideas and businesses into the economy.

If you want to learn from experts, build your skills, gain confidence, and develop networks to help you grow and succeed, join us as we take you on a journey to develop your ideas.

Launched in August 2020 by Innovate UK KTN, partnering with UK Black Tech, Foundervine, UltraEducation, Like Minded Females, St John’s Innovation Centre, Nicholas Himowicz, Spencer Ayres, and CareerEar, the series has since been viewed by over 2,000 people.

So far, it has explored topics ranging from marketing through to business plans, personal branding, intellectual property, and much more. Watch all recordings here.

YouTube

We’ll be updating our YouTube channel with plenty of resources & inspiration for you to turn your ideas into reality.

Get started with some videos below and be sure to subscribe to the Young Innovators Youtube playlist where you will find more on demand content.

LinkedIn

Join our LinkedIn group here to be part of our Young Innovators community.

Instagram

Follow us on Instagram here and join our Young Innovators community.

Newsletter

Sign up to our newsletter to keep up to date with upcoming funding opportunities, events, and news.

Previous Award Winners

We followed and enabled the journey of some incredibly inspiring young people in Phase 1 and 2 of the Young Innovators programme. They are now part of our alumni network which continues to grow and is a rich source of knowledge, experience, and expertise future winners can draw upon.

Find out more about  the first Young Innovators cohort here and about the second cohort here.

Moving forward, we will continue to support and nurture young people. We look forward to engaging with the new cohort, the growing alumni network, and the wider community to inspire new generations of diverse innovators. Together, we will shape a future beyond limits.

Resources

Building your network

Growing your idea with a grant

Taking your business to the next level