Current Grant Funding Opportunities 2021

Throughout the year there are a wide range of R&D Grant Funding competitions open to businesses across the UK. If your organisation is working on innovation projects there may be funding that you can apply for relevant to the work you are undertaking. Below is a summary of the latest competitions which have opened this month; more information on each can be found on the website by clicking the relevant links.

Applying for grant funding is a competitive process where your projects will be assessed alongside many others with a select number chosen to receive funding. R&D Funding Group works closely with specialist grant writing partners to help clients improve their chances of being awarded funding. If you want to apply for any of the current grant funding competitions, we offer a free, no-obligation consultation so please get in touch.


Innovate UK Smart Grants January 2021

Smart is Innovate UK’s ‘Open Grant Funding’ programme and in this latest round of the competition there is an opportunity for UK registered organisations to apply for a share of up to £25 million to deliver game-changing and commercially viable R&D innovation that can significantly impact the UK economy.

All proposals must be business focused and funding will be awarded to the best game-changing and commercially viable innovative or disruptive ideas. Applications can come from any area of technology and be applied to any part of the economy.

Your proposal must demonstrate:

  • a clear game-changing, innovative, disruptive, and ambitious idea leading to new products, processes or services
  • an idea that is significantly ahead of others in the field, set for rapid commercialisation
  • a strong and deliverable business plan that addresses (and documents) market potential and needs
  • a clear, evidence based plan to deliver significant economic impact, return on investment (ROI) and growth through commercialisation, as soon as possible after project completion
  • a team, business arrangement or working structure with the necessary skills and experience to run and complete the project successfully and on time
  • awareness of all the main risks the project will face (including contractor or equipment failure, recruitment delays, etc) with realistic management, mitigation and impact minimisation plans for each risk
  • clear, considerable potential to significantly impact either or both, the UK economy and productivity in a positive way
  • sound, practical financial plans and timelines that represent good value for money, which will always be a consideration in Innovate UK funding decisions

Competition closes: Wednesday 26 May 2021, 11:00am

Click here for further information.




ISCF TFI: large collaborative R&D projects

The aim of this competition is to improve the productivity and competitiveness of foundation industry companies and supply chains by funding cross-sector collaborative research and development projects.

£8 million of funding is available from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund for projects which work on resource and energy efficiency challenges common to 2 or more of the foundation industries. The foundation industries sectors include cement, paper, glass, ceramics, metals, and chemicals.

Your project must:

  • further develop technologies to reduce deployment risk and accelerate take-up across industries
  • develop new technologies that, when deployed, would create a step-change in resource or energy efficiency in these industries
  • be designed to help the UK’s foundation industries remain competitive

Competition closes: Wednesday 10 March 2021, 11:00am

Click here for further information.



Commercialising Quantum Technologies: Feasibility Studies Round 2

With funding from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £7 million for feasibility studies or market research projects. This competition is open to single applicants and collaborations.

The aim of the competition is to advance the commercialisation of quantum technologies in the UK through innovation projects which address one or more of the following technical challenges:

  • connectivity
  • situational awareness
  • computing

Your proposal must identify a clear market opportunity and an innovative project which exploits it.

Competition closes: Wednesday 10 March 2021, 11:00am

Click here for further information.



For more information on Innovate UK funding or to find out how R&D Funding Group can help with your grant application, please contact us for a no-obligation consultation.