SBRI : FOAK 2022 Low emissions and a greener railway
Organisations can apply for a share of £7,610,000, inclusive of VAT, to deliver innovations to address railway priorities across 3 themes.
- Competition opens: Wednesday 20 April 2022
- Competition closes: Wednesday 8 June 2022 11:00am
This competition is now closed.
This is a Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) competition funded by the Department for Transport (DfT). The aim of the competition is to deliver high maturity demonstrations of innovations to the UK railways.
This competition is part of a larger ‘first of a kind’ demonstrator initiative, on behalf of DfT. The initiative aims to accelerate innovation in the UK rail sector and enable technologies to be readily and efficiently integrated into the railway system. This competition is the sixth in the first of a kind portfolio.
This first of a kind competition has three themes:
- Theme 1 - Low emissions and a greener railway (this theme)
This is phase 1 of a potential 2 phase competition. The decision to proceed with phase 2 will depend on the outcomes from phase 1 and assessment of a separate application into a subsequent phase 2 competition. Only the successful applicants from phase 1 will be invited to apply to take part in phase 2.
- Theme 2 - Rail Freight
- Theme 3 - Cost efficiency and performance priorities for a reliable railway
It is your responsibility to ensure you are submitting your application to the correct theme for your project. You will not be able to transfer your application and it will not be sent for assessment if it is out of scope.
In applying to this competition, you are entering into a competitive process.
Any adoption and implementation of a solution from this competition would be subject to a separate, possibly competitive, procurement exercise. This competition does not cover the purchase of any solution.This competition closes at 11:00 am UK time on the date of the deadline.
Your phase 1 project can range in size up to total costs of £60,000, inclusive of VAT for 3 months.
Who can apply
Your phase 1 project:
- can start by 1 October 2022
- must end by 31 December 2022
- can last up to 3 months.
Your potential phase 2 projects can start by 1 March 2023 and must end by 31 October 2024, with a duration of up to 20 months.
To lead a project, you can:
- be an organisation of any size
- work alone or with others from business, research organisations, research and technology organisations or the third sector as subcontractors
Applicants are welcome from all sectors.
Your project must involve:
- an owner of railway assets (for example stations, rolling stock or infrastructure)
- an experienced railway organisation
- a rail organisation that has the potential to become a customer
These criteria can be met by a single organisation or up to three separate organisations.
You must also:
- include a potential integration partner
- have a letter of support signed by a senior individual, from a potential railway customer organisation
Proposals into this competition must already be high maturity at Rail Industry Readiness level 5 or above. You must evidence this as part of your application.
We welcome projects that include either an:
- innovative start-up supply company that is already delivering in another sector
- organisation with railway expertise, such as train operating companies, a freight operator, rolling stock manufacturers or operators and infrastructure owners
This competition will not fund any procurement, commercial, business development or supply chain activity with any Russian entity as lead or subcontractor. This includes any goods or services originating from a Russian source.
Contracts will be awarded to a single legal entity only. However, if you can justify subcontracting components of the work, you can engage specialists or advisers. This work will still be the responsibility of the main contractor.
If you are awarded a contract, you will be required to exhibit your project at the 2023 Innovate UK annual rail exhibition. We will provide the space and advise you of any technology you need to organise. You will also be able to lease equipment from the venue through us. The date and location of the event will be announced on the KTN website in December 2022. This is anticipated to be a live event.
Previously funded projects
If you have previously been funded for the same or similar innovations, you will not be eligible for this competition. Applications for this competition need to be materially different from previously funded innovations. The decision of Innovate UK and DfT on this matter will be final.
InterviewsIf your online application is assessed as eligible, you may be invited to attend an interview, where you must give a presentation. Your interview will take place either online or at a designated location. The date and time of your interview will be included in your invitation, with instructions for your presentation.
For theme 1 - Low emissions and a greener railway a total of up to £420,000, inclusive of VAT, is allocated to phase 1.
The phase 1 project R&D contracts will be up to £60,000 inclusive of VAT. We expect to fund up to 7 projects.
Phase 2 involves up to 3 contracts being awarded to organisations chosen from the successful phase 1 applicants. Up to £740,000 inclusive of VAT will be allocated for each contract, to develop a prototype and undertake field testing for up to 20 months.
The total funding available for the competition can change. The funders have the right to:
- adjust the provisional funding allocations between the themes and phases
- apply a ‘portfolio’ approach
The contract is completed at the end of the competition, and the successful organisation is expected to pursue commercialisation of their solution.
Value Added Tax (VAT)
You must select whether you are VAT registered before entering your project costs.
VAT is the responsibility of the invoicing business. We will not provide any further advice and suggest you seek independent advice from HMRC.
If you select you are VAT registered, you must enter your project costs exclusive of VAT. As part of the application process VAT will be automatically calculated and added to your project cost total. Your total project costs must not exceed £60,000.
Not VAT registered
If you select you are not VAT registered, you must enter your project costs exclusive of VAT and no VAT will be added. You will not be able to increase total project costs to cover VAT later should you become VAT registered. Your total project costs must not exceed £60,000.
Research and development
Your application must have at least 50% of the contract value attributed directly and exclusively to 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 the first of a kind competitions, is to deliver demonstrations to the UK’s railways. These must support low emissions and a greener railway, enhance rail freight, and address a range of key network performance priorities.
You must demonstrate how proven technologies can be integrated into a railway environment for the first time as ‘first of a kind’ demonstrations. This competition aims to support innovative suppliers in preparation for market readiness.
You must create a highly interactive and innovative demonstrator in your phase 2 project. This should be in an environment where railway customers and industry representatives can witness the product as a compelling business proposition.
Example environments can include:
- within a railway station
- in rolling stock
- on railway infrastructure
- in the environment close to the railway
This list is not exhaustive, we may also consider demonstrators in settings highly representative of these environments.
You must describe your projects potential to be successfully exploited in a railway environment. We encourage you to discuss regulations, policy and other requirements with potential customer organisations before you submit your application.
Your project must:
- gather evidence about integration challenges and explain how you will de-risk the integration
- demonstrate to railway stakeholders and customers the commercial benefits of the solution
- make taking up technologies less risky and faster
- be pre-commercial
- collect customer and performance feedback
- provide a business case for using the solution in a commercial environment
- consider the priorities of current and future franchises
- include an evaluation phase, collecting data to support the cost benefit assessment of your proposed solution
You must provide evidence, showing your innovation can attract customers, get insurance, supply warranties, and attract financing.
Your evidence must show:
- the technology works as designed when integrated into larger complex systems and delivers the expected outcomes
- the technology is accepted by and delivers benefits for customers and the broader rail industry
- there is revenue potential for the innovation within a real commercial context
- the financing and business models can be delivered within a complex programme and consortium structure
You must demonstrate potential benefits to passengers and customers, including:
- why customers would buy the product
- how the funding will help applicants grow and result in broader economic benefits
We will give preference to applications which:
- help the innovation to be formally accepted for use on the railway, for example, through obtaining test certificates or product acceptance approvals
- offer innovations that can be used by multiple railway organisations
You must define your goals in your phase 1 application and outline your phase 2 plan, including details of a full evaluation of the cost and benefits of your proposed phase 2 activity.
At the end of your phase 1 project, you must deliver a feasibility report outlining your full plans for potential phase 2 activity. Your report must identify the full workplan for the phase 2 demonstration.
It must describe the assets required, the subcontracted organisations, both engaged and potential, a list of milestones, and a full outline of the proposed demonstration activity to be delivered at the end of phase 2.
You must provide evidence that the required access and permissions have been fully de-risked.
In phase 2 we will ask successful applicants from phase 1 to fully develop the capability outlined in the phase 1 feasibility report. Your phase 2 project must deliver a demonstration of the innovation in a live railway environment.
This is part of the full commercial implementation in your phase 1 application. At this stage contracts will be given for phase 1 only.
You must present at an industry briefing event to highlight the benefits you can bring to the railways.
Your project must give a demonstration of your innovation in a live railway environment as a key deliverable of your phase 2 project and must be included as part of your milestones.
You must work with your railway partners to achieve this, obtaining all required permissions and approvals. This might take the form of a launch event at a railway station or depot, attended by a range of industry stakeholders with potential interest in your product.
Where required, the event may be online to access a wider selection of stakeholders, but in this case the events must be augmented by evidence of your deployment in a live railway environment.
You should de-risk all aspects of this before bidding into this competition to ensure that it can be delivered to the requirements of DfT and InnovateUK.
You must complete an evaluation activity at the end of the project, measuring data to anticipate the commercial impact that adoption of the innovation will have on the railway network.
This can be a measurement of the time taken to complete a task, or the costs incurred before and after adoption of the technology. Alternatively, the activity might take the form of a survey of railway staff to solicit feedback and to anticipate cost-benefit. In all cases the collection of objective data where possible is preferred over the collection of subjective feedback.
This information should be used to inform the future business case for your innovation. Involvement of individuals with expertise in designing such evaluation activities will benefit your application.
Contracts will be given to successful applicants.
All proposals must demonstrate a credible and practical route to market, so your application must include a plan to commercialise your results.
You must address reduced carbon emissions and the impact of the railway on the environment. Your project can focus on one or more of the following:
- technology solutions to substantially reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) when diesel passenger trains are idling
- passenger trains that can be powered by the AC overhead electrification and charge a battery from the overhead wire, to then run in battery only mode on unelectrified section of a route
- battery or hydrogen powered freight trains
Technical feasibility studies
This means planned research or critical investigation to gain new knowledge and skills for developing new products, processes or services.
In phase 1 the supplier will work closely with the stakeholders to develop a solution. The outcome of phase 2 will be a prototype of the solution.
Prototype development, evaluation and demonstrationFor your phase 2 project, this can include prototyping, demonstrating, piloting, testing and validation of new or improved products, processes or services in environments representative of real-life operating conditions. The primary objective is to make further technical improvements on products, processes or services that are not substantially set.
Projects we will not fund
We will not fund projects that:
- are not likely to be successfully exploited by the rail industry to deliver benefits to rail or light-rail organisations and their customers
- do not create a significant change in the level of innovation available in the rail industry
- are not already well-developed technology at Rail Industry Readiness level 5, above or do not have low technical risk
- that cannot effectively deliver a demonstration within a live railway environment
- do not feature a demonstration phase, offering potential customers a chance to use the innovation and give feedback
- do not include an evaluation phase, and a plan to collect information to inform a cost or benefit analysis
- have total eligible costs or project terms outside of the eligibility guidance
- would directly duplicate other UK government or EU funded initiatives you have already been funded to deliver
- are covered by existing commercial agreements to deliver the proposed solutions
- do not address how any potentially negative outcomes, such as on the environment or society, would be managed
Note that although software (also known as applications) for mobile devices may be in scope, only a limited number of these projects will be supported.
- 20 April 2022
- Competition opens
- 5 May 2022
- Briefing event: register to attend
- 8 June 2022 11:00am
- Competition closes
- 25 July 2022
- Interviews start
- 29 July 2022
- Interviews end
- 5 August 2022
- 5 August 2022
- Applicants notified
- 12 September 2022
- Phase 1 contracts awarded
Before you start
By submitting an application, you agree to the terms of the draft contract which is available once you start your application. The terms of the contract are non-negotiable and are included in the draft contract. We reserve the right to change the terms and conditions if necessary.
The final contract will include any milestones you have agreed with the funding authority and will be sent to you if your application is successful. The contract is binding once it is returned by you and signed by both parties.
When you start an application, you will be prompted to create an account as the lead applicant or sign in as a representative of your organisation. Using your account, you will be able to track your applications progress.
As the applicant you are responsible for:
- collecting the information for your application
- representing your organisation in leading the project if your application is successful
If your online application is assessed as eligible, you may be invited to attend an interview, where you must give a presentation. Your interview will take place either online or at a designated location. The date and time of your interview will be included in your invitation.
Before the interview and by the deadline stated in the invitation email, you:
- must send a list of who will attend the interview
- must send your interview presentation slides
- can send a written response to the assessors’ feedback
List of attendees
Agree the list with your project team. Up to 3 people from your project can attend, ideally with one person representing your railway partner. They must all be available on all published interview dates. We are unable to reschedule slots once allocated.
Your interview presentation must:
- use Microsoft PowerPoint
- be no longer than 10 minutes
- have no more than 10 slides
- not include any video or embedded web links
- include details of your final project demonstration
- include details of how you plan to commercialise your innovation
You cannot change the presentation after you submit it or bring any additional materials to the interview.
Written response to assessor feedback
This is optional and is an opportunity to answer the assessors’ concerns. It can:
- be up to 2 A4 pages in a single PDF or Word document
- include charts or diagrams
After your presentation the panel will spend 10 minutes asking questions. You will be expected to answer based on the information you provided in your application form, presentation and the response to feedback.
After your interview
The panellists will individually score your application and these will be averaged for your overall interview score. This score will supercede the one you received from initial assessment unless stated otherwise in the competition brief. We will notify you whether you have been successful or not by email and you will receive feedback on your interview within a week of notification.
What happens next
A selected panel of assessors will review and score your application. You will be notified of the outcome and feedback will be provided. Contracts for this competition, phase 1, will then be issued to all successful applicants.For phase 2 assessors can also take into account the phase 1 end-of-phase report. They might ask a number of finalists to attend an interview or give a demonstration.
What we will ask you
The application is split into 3 sections:
- Project details.
- Application questions.
1. Project details
These sections are not scored.
The lead applicant must complete this section. Give your project’s title, start date and duration.
Who made you aware of the competition?
Select a category to state who made you aware of the competition. You cannot choose more than one.
How long has your organisation been established for?
Select a category to state how long has your organisation been established for. You cannot choose more than one.
What is your organisation’s primary area focus?
Select a category to state your organisation’s primary focus area. You cannot choose more than one.
Equality Diversity and Inclusion
We collect and report on equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) data to address under-representation in business innovation and ensure equality, diversity and inclusion across all our activities.
All participants must complete this EDI survey and the lead applicant must then select yes in the application question.
The survey will ask you questions on your gender, age, ethnicity and disability status. You will always have the option to ‘prefer not to say’ if you do not feel comfortable sharing this information.
Project and scope summary
Please provide a short summary of your project.
Describe your project briefly. Be clear about what makes it innovative and how it relates to the scope of the competition. How does it tackle different aspects of the challenge and how will it provide an integrated solution?
Give details of the lead organisation. Before you submit, we expect you to have discussed your application within your organisation.
Your answer for this section can be up to 800 words long.
This section is not scored, but we will use it to decide whether the project fits the scope of the competition. If it does not, it may be rejected.
Please provide a brief description of your project. If your application is successful, we will publish this description. This could happen before you start your project. This question is mandatory, but we will not assess this content as part of your application.
Describe your project in a way that you are happy to see published. Do not include any commercially sensitive information. We have the right to amend the description before publication if necessary but will consult you about any changes.
Your answer can be up to 400 words long.
You must state the name of your organisation along with your full registered address.
You must also state the name and full registered address of any potential or confirmed subcontractors.
We are collecting this information to understand the geographical location of all participants of a project.Your answer can be up to 400 words long.
2. Application questions
The assessors will score all of your questions except question 1 which is not scored.
Your answer to each question can be up to 400 words long. Do not include any URLs in your answers unless we have explicitly requested a link to a video.
Question 1. Previous applications and Rail Industry Readiness Level (not scored)
You must list previously funded projects the same or similar to your innovation made over the last three years.
In terms of your project goals, describe or explain:
- the commonality and differentiation between this application and previous projects
- the outcomes of previous projects, and their commercial success
You must provide evidence that what you are proposing is at Rail Industry Readiness Level 5 or above.
Question 2. Proposed idea or technology (scored out of 10)
How does the project meet the challenge described in the competition scope?
Provide a description of your proposed idea or technology.
Include a description of the current state of development or readiness of the idea.
- the main motivation for the project
- the business need or market opportunity
- how the railway will benefit from what you propose
- the nearest current state-of-the-art, including those near market or in development, and its limitations
- any work you have already done to respond to this need, for example if the project focuses on developing an existing capability or building a new one
You can submit a single appendix as a PDF containing images and diagrams to support your answer. It can be no larger than 10MB and up to 2 A4 pages long. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.
This question will be scored against this assessment criterion: ‘How well does the proposal meet the challenge?’.
Question 3. Technical project summary (scored out of 40)
What are the main technical challenges you are addressing?
- how you will address the challenge
- what the innovation is
- the main technical deliverables
- the research and development that will prove the scientific, environmental and commercial merit of the project
- what might be achieved by deploying the innovation to address the selected challenge
This question will be scored against this assessment criterion: ‘How valid is the technical approach?’.
Question 4. Current state of the art and intellectual property (scored out of 10)
Are similar products currently available in the market?
How is your proposed project differentiated from them?
You must include details of:
- any existing intellectual property (IP)
- its significance to your freedom to operate
- novel concepts you develop or employ
- new approaches or technologies you use
- new tools or technologies
This question will be scored against these assessment criteria: ‘How innovative is this project? How much does the project develop or employ novel concepts, approaches, methodologies, tools or technologies for this area?’.
Question 5. Project plan and methodology (scored out of 10)
Describe your project plan and identify the main milestones.
Your plan for phase 1 must be comprehensive. For phase 2 only an outline is required. The emphasis throughout should be on practicality.
Provide evidence that the technology works, can be made into a viable product and can achieve the proposed benefits.
- describe resources that will be needed to deliver the project
- describe what the main success criteria will be
- identify the project management processes that will ensure you achieve the milestones
- provide a clear plan for establishing technical and commercial feasibility
- describe the main technical, commercial and environmental risks and what you will do to mitigate them
- provide a clear plan for development of a working prototype
- provide a clear plan of your demonstration and evaluation activity
You must explain how you would handle any IP issues which might arise during the project.
Include details of how you will maintain freedom to operate and fulfil the IP requirements detailed in the contract if you are working with subcontractors.
You must upload a project plan or Gantt chart as an appendix in PDF format no larger than 10MB and up to 2 A4 pages. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.
Your milestones must:
- be clear
- be defined using SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound) criteria
- be associated with the appropriate deliverables and payments
- indicate your payment schedule by month
Please note that all payments are made quarterly in arrears.
This question will be assessed against these assessment criteria:
- does the proposal show a clear plan for establishing technical and commercial feasibility and the development of a working prototype
- is there a clear management plan
- what are the main technical, commercial, and environmental risks to the project’s success
- how will these be effectively managed
- are the milestones and evaluation procedures appropriate
Please note information from the finances section will be used to support the assessment of this question. Proposed milestones and associated payments stated in this section must match those entered in the finance summary on your application.
Question 6. Technical team and expertise (scored out of 10)
Who is in the technical team? What expertise do they offer?
Provide a brief description of your technical team, including any subcontractors.
- how each organisation has the skills, capabilities, and experience to deliver the intended benefits
- how much of their time will be spent on the project
This question will be scored against this assessment criterion: Does the applicant have the skills, capabilities and experience to deliver the intended benefits?
Question 7. Costs and value for money (scored out of 10)
How much will the project cost? How does it represent value for money for the team and the taxpayer?
- the total costs inclusive of VAT (If applicable) you are requesting in terms of the project goals for phase 1
- how this project represents value for money for you and the taxpayer
- what are your expected costs for phase 2
Please note also that progression to phase 2 depends on your success in phase 1.
Proposed costs stated in this section for phase 1 only, must match those entered in the finance summary. You can submit a single appendix as a PDF containing images and diagrams to support your answer. It can be no larger than 10MB and up to 2 A4 pages long. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.
Costs quoted must reflect actual costs at a “fair market value” and not include profit.
If you are VAT registered, you must enter your project costs inclusive of VAT. Your total project costs must not exceed £60,000.
Not VAT registered
If you are not VAT registered, you must enter your project costs exclusive of VAT. You will not be able to increase total project costs to cover VAT later should you become VAT registered. Your total project costs must not exceed £60,000.
We cannot provide VAT advice and suggest you seek independent advice for example from HMRC.
Costs quoted must reflect actual costs at a ‘fair market value’ and not include profit.
Full Economic Cost (FEC) calculations are not relevant for SBRI competitions. SBRI is a competitive process and applications will come from a variety of organisations. Whatever calculation you use to arrive at your total eligible project costs your application will be assessed against applications from other organisations. Bear this in mind when calculating your total eligible project costs. You can include overheads but remember that this is a competitive process.
The assessors are required to judge the application finances in terms of value for money. They will score your finances against this assessment criterion: ‘Are the budget and costs realistic, justified and appropriate for the aims and methods?
Please note information from the finances section will be used to support the assessment of this question. Proposed costs stated in this section must match those entered in the finance summary on your application.
Question 8. Commercial potential (scored out of 20)
What is the commercial potential of your project? You must focus on your proposed customer’s needs.
- projects commercial potential for a marketable product, process or service
- delivery plan
- expected route to market
Describe the competitive advantage that your project has over existing or alternative technologies that meet market needs.
Describe any existing commercial relationships relevant to the project.
With the focus on your proposed customer’s needs, you can also mention the future commercial potential across the public or private sector and international markets.
You must submit your letters of support as a single appendix to support your answer. It must be a PDF, can be no larger than 10MB and up to 4 A4 pages long. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.
This question will be scored against these assessment criteria:
- is there a clear commercial potential for a marketable product, process or service
- is there a clear plan to deliver that and a clear route to market
- how significant is the competitive advantage of this technology over existing technologies that meet the market’s needs
Enter your phase 1 project costs, organisation details and funding details.
You must select whether you are VAT registered before entering your project costs. We advise you answer the VAT registered question first before entering your costs. Your total project costs must not exceed £60,000.
If you select you are VAT registered, you must enter your project costs exclusive of VAT. As part of the application process VAT will be automatically calculated and added to your project cost total.
If you select you are not VAT registered, you must enter your project costs exclusive of VAT and no VAT will be added. You will not be able to increase total project costs to cover VAT later should you become VAT registered.
VAT is the responsibility of the invoicing business. We will not provide any further advice and advise you to seek independent advice from HMRC.For full information on what costs you can claim, see our project costs guidance.
Background and further information
About Small Business Research Initiative competitions
SBRI provides innovative solutions to challenges faced by the public sector. This can lead to better public services and improved efficiency and effectiveness.
The SBRI programme:
- supports economic growth and enables the development of innovative products and services through the public procurement of R&D
- generates new business opportunities for companies
- provides a route to market for their ideas
- bridges the seed funding gap experienced by many early-stage companies
SBRI competitions are open to all eligible organisations that can demonstrate a route to market for their solution. Under current regulations, SBRI contracts are open to applications from organisations registered in the UK, European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA). The SBRI scheme is particularly suited to small and medium-sized businesses, as the contracts are of relatively small value and operate on short timescales. Developments are 100% funded and focused on specific identified needs, increasing the chance of exploitation.
SBRI is a procurement of R&D services. If successful, you will receive a contract to deliver the proposed activity. You will submit an invoice for the work undertaken. If you are VAT registered, your total costs are expected to include VAT that you would charge as a service provider. VAT is the responsibility of the invoicing business, and applications are expected to list total costs inclusive of VAT.
Suppliers for each project will be selected by an open competition process and retain the intellectual property generated from the project, with certain rights of use retained by the contracting authority. This is an excellent opportunity to establish an early customer for a new technology and to fund its development.
The stakeholders for this competition include:
- Network Rail
- Transport for London
- rolling stock operating companies
- freight operators
- train operating companies
- infrastructure providers
- owning groups
Representatives from these organisations will be invited to the competition briefing events to discuss their priorities.
Data you can use
The full range of Ordnance Survey’s (OS) geospatial data products is available without charge to all projects that are funded under this competition.
You are welcome to sign up to the beta version of the OS Data Hub for free API (Application Programming Interface) access to detailed OS mapping and download access to OS’s open data products.
Additionally, OS’s premium data products can be downloaded by signing up to their data exploration licence. Against the question ‘What do you plan to do with the data?’, select ‘other’ and type ‘Rail Innovation: First of a Kind 2022’ in the text box.
Ordnance Survey will make arrangements to allow you to place orders for the data you need.
For more information on the railway industry’s priorities, please refer to:
- Network Rail Challenges
- Rail Industry Readiness Level definitions
- Rail Data Action Plan
- Rail Data Marketplace
- Rail Technical Strategy
This competition is jointly operated by Innovate UK, and the Department for Transport (DfT) (each an “agency”).
Your submitted application and any other information you provide at the application stage can be submitted to each agency on an individual basis for its storage, processing and use. Any relevant information produced during the application process concerning your application can be shared by one agency with the other, for its individual storage, processing and use.
This means that any information given to or generated by Innovate UK in respect of your application may be passed on to DfT and vice versa.
DfT will also see your project’s progress reports and will expect to be invited to the quarterly progress meetings.
Innovate UK is directly accountable to you for its holding and processing of your information, including any personal data and confidential information. It is held in accordance with its Information Management Policy.
Innovate UK and DfT are directly accountable to you for their holding and processing of your information, including any personal data and confidential information. Data is held in accordance with their own policies. Accordingly, Innovate UK, and DfT will be data controllers for personal data submitted during the application.
Innovate UK complies with the requirements of GDPR, and is committed to upholding the data protection principles, and protecting your information. The Information Commissioner’s Office also has a useful guide for organisations, which outlines the data protection principles.
Your application may also be shared with the RSSB (Rail Safety and Standards Board) to help reduce duplication of funding across the rail industry and to check your demonstrator is innovative.
If we decide not to fund your application, we may share it with Great British Railways, Network Rail and HS2. If your application is relevant to the business challenges of these organisations and our assessors have given it a high score, these organisations may consider offering you funding. We may also ask your permission to share the public summary from your application with other related organisations that manage alternative funding opportunities.
Innovate UK Evaluation
You will be required to work with Innovate UK to analyse and interpret the data using the techniques specified in the evaluation plans, to support the production of reports at an agreed annual reporting schedule.
You will be briefed on the specific metrics and evidence following notification of your award. For planning, forecasting and budgeting purposes, each organisation within a consortium will be expected to allocate 3 working days to supporting this requirement over the life of the project. You will also be asked to respond periodically to further requests, following your project’s conclusion, recognising Innovate UK’s obligations, and the benefits of, evaluating impact over time.
Further help and guidance
We understand it may be a challenge to access railway assets and get permission to make modifications. We expect you to develop your own relationships with railway asset owners.
To help you to build your consortium we recommend you:
- attend the competition briefing and consortium-building events
- contact Innovate UK KTN.
- contact railway organisations such as the Rail Industry Association
If you receive an award, you will be contacted about working with an innovation and growth specialist at Innovate UK EDGE. This service forms part of our funded offer to you.
These specialists focus on growing innovative businesses and ensuring that projects contribute to their growth. Working one-to-one, they can help you to identify your best strategy and harness world-class resources to grow and achieve scale.
We encourage you to engage with Innovate UK EDGE, delivered by a knowledgeable and objective specialist near you.
If you need support with the application process, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the competition helpline on 0300 321 4357 between 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday (excluding Bank Holidays).
Innovate UK is committed to making support for applicants accessible to everyone.
We can provide help for applicants who face barriers when making an application. This might be because of a disability, neurodiversity or anything else that makes it difficult to use our services. We can also give help and make other reasonable adjustments for you if your application is successful.
If you think you need more support, it is important that you contact our Customer Support Service as early as possible during your application process. You should aim to contact us no later than 10 working days before the competition closing date.
Need help with this service? Contact us