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Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund

The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) aims to bring together the UK’s world leading research with business to meet the major industrial and societal challenges of our time.

What is the fund?

The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund was created to provide funding and support to UK businesses and researchers, part of the government’s £4.7 billion increase in research and development over the next 4 years.

It was designed to ensure that research and innovation takes centre stage in the Government’s Industrial Strategy.

The challenges

Working together the Government, businesses and academics have identified the biggest core industrial challenges where:

  • the UK has a world-leading research base
  • there is a large or fast-growing and sustainable global market

The six challenges that have been selected to receive fund support so far are:

Healthcare and medicines

To develop first-of-a-kind technologies for the manufacture of medicines. The aim is to speed up patient access to new drugs and treatments.

Robotics and artificial intelligence

To improve the productivity of industry and public services, innovations using artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics systems will be developed, that can be deployed in extreme environments. This includes industries such as offshore energy, nuclear energy, space and deep mining. Proposals for research hubs are currently in progress.

Clean and flexible energy

To design, development and manufacture of batteries for the electrification of vehicles to support the business opportunities presented by the low carbon economy and tackle air pollution. A call for a research institute is currently open.

Driverless vehicles

The fund will invest in collaborative research and development projects to develop the next generation of A.I. and control systems need to ensure the UK is at the forefront of the driverless cars revolution.

Manufacturing and materials of the future

The fund will develop new, affordable, light-weight composite materials for aerospace, automotive and other advanced manufacturing sectors.

Satellites and space technology

A satellite test facility will be established. This will support new launch technologies, manufacturing and testing capabilities to construct future satellites and deliver payloads into orbit.

Read the press release announcing the 6 challenges.

Further Information

Information about further challenges, future engagement activities and how to access funding for researchers will be published here as they are announced.

Please direct all enquiries to:

Information for businesses will be managed by Innovate UK.

For information on opportunities for businesses go to the Innovate UK website.

News stories

Read the latest updates on the fund.

Calls for Batteries Research Institute and research projects open  24/07/2017
Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Hub bids invited through to next round  10/07/2017
Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund opportunities begin to open  22/06/2017
Business Secretary announces Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund investments 21/04/2017
UK’s research and innovation bodies welcome budget 8/03/2017
First Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund engagement begins 16/01/2017


See blog posts on the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.



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