Innovation Vouchers Scheme | AECC University College
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Innovation Vouchers Scheme

Overview

Innovation vouchers can provide your small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) with access to academic skills, expertise, and specialist equipment and facilities to improve your business’ innovation capability and the opportunity to build a long-term partnership with AECC University College.

Through the scheme, SMEs are provided with an introduction to working with AECC University College with a view to developing new partnerships and identifying opportunities for further collaboration.

Projects

Each project should address a genuine challenge face by your business – an issue that can only be tackled with the help of expert know-how and specialist facilities – and must be delivered in collaboration with AECC University College.

We will work with you to understand the business needs and introduce you to relevant academics/clinicians to scope an innovative project with defined tasks, deliverables and outcomes.

Innovation vouchers can be used for a range of projects and examples of eligible project types include:

  • exploring complex challenges facing SMEs;
  • scoping or developing innovative (new or improved) products, processes or services;
  • developing your workforce;
  • undertaking proof of concept or feasibility studies to de-risk investment;
  • exploring new business models or scoping a new business idea;
  • exploring other ways to stimulate your company’s growth.

Examples of eligible activities include:

  • accessing specialist equipment, technology and facilities;
  • bespoke CPD for organisations and teams;
  • tapping into research or scientific expertise;
  • accessing expertise and information on new technologies, materials, treatments or procedures;
  • market research;
  • testing and diagnostic services.

Each innovation voucher fully covers the costs of the services provided by AECC University College and is expected to be valued at between £1,000 and £5,000. No money will be paid to the SMEs, which will be responsible for their own costs or contribution towards their projects.

Areas of academic expertise

  • Chiropractic
  • Dietetics
  • Medical imaging and radiography
  • Occupational therapy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Podiatry
  • Psychology
  • Rehabilitation
  • Speech and language
  • Sport rehabilitation
  • Sport, exercise and health science
  • Workforce systems and innovation

Specialist facilities

Clinical imaging:
  • Open upright MRI
  • Ultrasound
  • X-ray
Specialist clinical services:
  • Sports injury
  • VO2 Max testing
  • Shockwave therapy
  • Massage therapy
  • Newborn feeding
  • Paediatrics
Rehabilitation services:
  • State-of-the-art integrated rehabilitation centre
  • Neurological physiotherapy
  • Antigravity treadmill
  • MOTOmed

Application process

Contact us by email (research@aecc.ac.uk) for an initial discussion about your business needs and potential options for collaboration. We will guide you through the application process.

Applications must be received by Friday 19 April 2024. As the total number of innovation vouchers is limited, and applications will be reviewed by our Innovation Vouchers Panel. All projects must be completed by 31 July 2024.

Preference will be given to proposals from mature SMEs who wish to engage with the university and our academics/clinicians for the first time.

As part of the application process, you must demonstrate a desire to build an ongoing relationship with AECC University College.

Eligibility

To be eligible, your organisation must be an established, revenue-generating UK-based SME with fewer than 250 employees and less than £50 million turnover.

You should be able to demonstrate innovation and growth and be looking for support to take the SME to the next level.

You should have an idea that will help your SME to grow and need specialist help to complete a challenge you are facing. The SME must contribute in some way to the project (by making a cash and/or in-kind contribution, such as SME staff time).

No more than one voucher will be awarded per SME.

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