Funding competition Commercialising Connected and Automated Mobility: Mass transit

UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £1.5 million for feasibility studies into the use of connected and automated mobility as a mass transit solution.

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Competition sections

Description

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will work with the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) to invest up to £41.5 million in innovation projects across two competition strands.

The aim of this competition is to support the CCAV ambition to progress technologies, products and services into commercial offerings.

This competition is split into 2 strands.

In strand 2 of the competition, your proposal must identify applications and quantify the real-life potential of Connected and Automated Mobility (CAM) as a mass transit solution.

We have allocated up to £1.5 million to fund feasibility study projects in this strand.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are entering the appropriate strand of the competition 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. This competition closes at 11:00am UK time on the deadline stated.

Funding type

Grant

Project size

Your project’s total grant funding request must be between £50,000 and £200,000.

Who can apply

Text update 30 May 2022: we have changed the research participation to 50% requested by the funding organisation.

Your project

Your project must:

  • start by 1 January 2023
  • end by 30 November 2023
  • carry out all project work in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK
  • work with Department for Transport (DfT) and the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) to ensure compatibility with regulatory requirements

You must only include eligible project costs in your application.

Under current restrictions, this competition will not fund any procurement, commercial, business development or supply chain activity with any Russian entity as lead, partner or subcontractor. This includes any goods or services originating from a Russian source.

If your total project’s grant funding request or duration falls outside of our eligibility criteria, you must provide justification by email to support@iuk.ukri.org at least 15 working days before the competition closes. We will decide whether to approve your request. If you have not requested approval or your application has not been approved by us, you will be made ineligible and will not be sent for assessment.

Lead organisation

To lead a project your organisation must:

If a research organisation is leading or collaborating with another research organisation on a project, eligible businesses must be responsible for a minimum of 50% of the total project costs.


Project team

To collaborate with the lead, your organisation must be one of the following UK registered:

Your project must include as a lead or grant claiming partner a:

  • local or regional authority or a local or regional transport authority
  • Connected & Automated Mobility (CAM) technology provider or an infrastructure provider

Each partner organisation must be invited into the Innovation Funding Service by the lead to collaborate on a project. Once accepted, partners will be asked to login or to create an account and enter their own project costs into the Innovation Funding Service.

The lead and at least one other organisation must claim funding by entering their costs during the application.

Your project can include partners that do not receive any of this competition’s funding, for example non-UK businesses. Their costs will count towards the total project costs.

Subcontractors

Subcontractors are allowed in this competition.

Subcontractors can be from anywhere in the UK and you must select them through your usual procurement process.

You can use subcontractors from overseas but must make the case in your application as to why you could not use suppliers from the UK.

You must provide a detailed rationale, evidence of the potential UK contractors you approached and the reasons why they were unable to work with you. We will not accept a cheaper cost as a sufficient reason to use an overseas subcontractor.

All subcontractor costs must be justified and not exceed 30% of the total project costs.

Number of applications

A business, research organisation or RTO can only lead on one application in this strand and where eligible, up to 2 applications across the whole competition. If leading it can be included as a collaborator in a further 2 applications. This is across the two strands of the competition.

A business, research organisation, RTO, charity, not for profit or public sector organisation not leading an application, can collaborate in any number of applications across the two strands of the competition.

Previous applications

You can use a previously submitted application to apply for this competition.

We will not award you funding if you have:

Subsidy control (and State aid where applicable)

This competition provides funding in line with the UK's obligations and commitments to Subsidy Control. Further information about the UK Subsidy Control requirements can be found within the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation agreement and the subsequent guidance from the department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

Innovate UK is unable to award organisations that are considered to be in financial difficulty. We will conduct financial viability and eligibility tests to confirm this is not the case following the application stage.

EU State aid rules now only apply in limited circumstances. Please see our general guidance to check if these rules apply to your organisation.


Further Information

If you are unsure about your obligations under the UK Subsidy Control regime or the State aid rules, you should take independent legal advice. We are unable to advise on individual eligibility or legal obligations.

You must at all times make sure that the funding awarded to you is compliant with all current Subsidy Control legislation applicable in the United Kingdom.
This aims to regulate any advantage granted by a public sector body which threatens to, or actually distorts competition in the United Kingdom or any other country or countries.

If there are any changes to the above requirements that mean we need to change the terms of this competition, we will tell you as soon as possible.

Funding

Text update 30 May 2022: we have changed the research participation to 50% requested by the funding organisation.

Up to £41.5 million has been allocated to fund innovation projects across the two strands of the competition. We have allocated up to £1.5million to fund innovation projects in this strand 2. Funding will be in the form of a grant.

You should apply for the minimum amount of funding required to make your project viable.

If the majority of your organisation’s work on the project is commercial or economic, your funding request must not exceed the limits below. These limits apply even if your organisation normally acts non-economically.

For feasibility study projects, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:

  • up to 70% if you are a micro or small organisation
  • up to 60% if you are a medium sized organisation
  • up to 50% if you are a large organisation

For more information on company sizes, please refer to the company accounts guidance. This is a change from the EU definition unless you are applying under State aid.

If you are applying for an award funded under State aid Regulations, the definitions are set out in the European Commission Recommendation of 6 May 2003.

Research participation

The organisations undertaking non-economic activity as part of the project can share up to 50% of the total eligible project costs. If your consortium contains more than one organisation undertaking non-economic activity, this maximum is shared between them.

Of that 50% you could get funding for your eligible project costs of up to:

  • 80% of full economic costs (FEC) if you are a Je-S registered institution such as an academic
  • 100% of your project costs if you are an RTO, charity, not-for-profit organisation, public sector organisation or research organisation

Your proposal

The aim of this competition is to target early commercial self-driving vehicle opportunities, and support the UK supply chain to grow and fill technology gaps necessary for their deployment.

Where appropriate, your project must align with the nine principles of the Future of Mobility Urban Strategy.

In this strand: Commercialising Connected & Automated Mobility: Mass transit, CCAV is seeking proposals where Connected and Automated Mobility (CAM) could deliver a significantly more cost effective, and low carbon solution than traditional public transport options.

Your project must identify a new application for CAM as a mass transit solution on a segregated route and quantify the real-life potential of a suitable solution.

Your proposed automated vehicle services must be on physically segregated infrastructure: routes that are not open to public access: for vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and other road users. This can include for example, tracks, disused railway routes.

Your proposal must:

  • consider the utilisation of new CAM technologies for innovative mass transit services on segregated infrastructure, including both new and disused infrastructure, or infrastructure that would otherwise require a significant upgrade
  • propose the design, delivery, and operational cases for the introduction of a service on a specific, UK route currently underserved by public transport, including how it could be practically delivered and operated as part of an integrated public transport network.
  • solve real-life transport problems and focus on areas and routes in the UK that are currently underserved by public transport, particularly areas where traditional rail services are not deemed viable
  • set out why an automated vehicle service would provide better outcomes than traditional mass transit modes, for example, heavy and light rail, tram and bus, including guided busways
  • consider how a service could be improved or expanded in the future, for example, as technology develops and legislation enables the use of automated vehicles on public roads

Your project must submit:

  • an interim report by 1 May 2023
  • a final report by 30 November 2023

We will fund a variety of projects across the competition strands, themes, different applications, geographies and operational design domains. We call this a portfolio approach.

Terminology in your application must comply with the meanings as per BSI Flex 1890 v4.0:2022-03: Connected and automated vehicles - Vocabulary

Successful projects must support and engage with the Impact and Evaluation framework..

Specific themes

Your project must consider all the following themes:

  • economic, social, and decarbonisation benefits, considering the Green Book
  • capital expenditure and operational expenditure
  • infrastructure and service delivery plan and timelines
  • commercial viability and revenue protection
  • passenger capacity and scalability of service
  • encouraging the use of public transport
  • integration into existing public transport networks, including active travel, with consideration of connected infrastructure, on demand and Mobility as a Service technologies
  • connecting underserved routes, locations, or populations to employment centres, education opportunities and larger population centres
  • ensuring safety and security, including cyber security
  • use of UK-based automation and infrastructure technologies and expertise
  • ensuring public trust in the service
  • ensuring accessibility and inclusivity of the service

Your project can consider the use of CAM:

  • on new infrastructure
  • on disused infrastructure or infrastructure that otherwise requires costly upgrades, for example rail lines
  • in rural, semi-rural or urban environments

You must ensure that your project will consider all legal requirements in your chosen deployment areas. It is your responsibility to take legal advice in this matter.

Research categories

We will fund feasibility studies only, as defined in the guidance on categories of research.

Projects we will not fund

We are not funding projects that:

  • are industrial research or experimental development projects
  • rely on the use of automated vehicles on public roads
  • propose the use of automated vehicle technology on rail vehicles
  • include aircraft or waterborne craft
  • are dependent on export performance
  • are dependent on domestic inputs usage

23 May 2022
Competition opens
24 May 2022
Industry engagement event: watch the recording
20 July 2022 11:00am
Competition closes
30 September 2022
Applicants notified

Before you start

You must read the guidance on applying for a competition on the Innovation Funding Service before you start.

What we ask you

The application is split into 3 sections:

  1. Project details.
  2. Application questions.
  3. Finances.

1. Project details

This section provides background for the assessors and is not scored.

Application team

Decide which organisations will work with you on the project. Invite people from those organisations to help complete the application.

Application details

The lead applicant must complete this section. Give your project’s title, start date and duration.

Subsidy basis

Will the project, including any related activities you want Innovate UK to fund, affect trade between Northern Ireland and the EU?

You and all your project partners must respond and mark this question as complete, before you can submit your application.

Research category

Select the type of research you will undertake.

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 summary

Describe your project briefly and be clear about what makes it innovative. We use this section to assign the right experts to assess your application.

Your answer can be up to 400 words long.

Public description

Describe your project in detail and in a way that you are happy to see published. Do not include any commercially sensitive information. If we award your project funding, we will publish this description. This could happen before you start your project.

Your answer can be up to 400 words long.

Scope

Describe how your project fits the scope of the competition. If your project is not in scope it will be immediately rejected and will not be sent for assessment. We will tell you the reason why.

Your answer can be up to 400 words long.

2. Application questions

Text update 10/6/2022: we have changed Question 1 by adding Subcontractors to the text to make it clearer.

The assessors will score all your answers apart from question 1. You will receive feedback for each scored question.

You must answer all questions. Your answer to each question can be up to 400 words long. Do not include any website addresses (URLs) in your answers.

Question 1. Applicant location (not scored)

You must state the name and full registered address of your organisation, any partners and subcontractors working on your project. We are collecting this information to understand the geographical location of all applicants.

Question 2. Need or challenge

What is the transport need, technological challenge or market opportunity behind your project?

Explain:

  • the main motivation for the project
  • the transport need, technological challenge or market opportunity
  • any work undertaken already to date to respond to this need, for example through traditional transport modes
  • the wider economic, social, environmental, cultural or political challenges which are influential in creating the opportunity, using our Horizons tool if appropriate

Question 3. Approach and innovation

What approach will you take and where will the focus of the innovation be?

Explain:

  • how you will respond to the need, challenge or opportunity identified
  • whether the innovation will focus on existing technologies in new areas, the development of new technologies for existing areas or a totally disruptive approach
  • how you will work with local and regional stakeholders and communities
  • how this project fits with your current product or services
  • how the project will improve transport outcomes
  • the outputs you will deliver

You can submit one appendix to support your answer. It can include diagrams and charts. It must be a PDF, up to 2 A4 pages long and no larger than 10MB in size. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.

Question 4. Team and resources

Who is in the project team and what are their roles?

Explain:

  • the roles, skills and experience of all members of the project team that are relevant to the approach you will be taking
  • the resources, equipment and facilities needed for the project and how you will access them, particularly in the light of any continuing COVID-19 restrictions
  • the details of any vital external parties, including subcontractors, who you will need to work with to successfully carry out the project
  • if your project is collaborative, the current relationships between project partners and how these will change as a result of the project
  • any roles you will need to recruit for, taking into account the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on the team structure

You can submit one appendix with a short summary of the main people working on the project to support your answer. It must be a PDF, up to 4 A4 pages long and no larger than 10MB in size. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.

Question 5. Market awareness

What does the market you are targeting look like?

Describe:

  • the target markets for the project outcomes, any other potential markets (domestic, international or both)
  • the size of the target markets for the project outcomes, backed up by references where available
  • the structure and dynamics of the target markets, including customer segmentation, together with predicted growth rates within clear timeframes
  • the target markets’ main supply or value chains and business models, and any barriers to entry that exist
  • the current UK position in targeting these markets
  • the size and main features of any other markets not already listed

If your project is highly innovative, where the market may be unexplored, describe or explain:

  • what the market’s size might be
  • how your project will try to explore the market’s potential

Question 6. Outcomes and route to market

How are you going to grow your business and increase long term productivity as a result of the project?

Explain:

  • your current position in the markets and supply or value chains outlined, and whether you will be extending or establishing your market position
  • your target customers or end users, and the value to them, for example why they would use or buy your product
  • your route to market, particularly if COVID-19 has changed market dynamics
  • how you are going to profit from the innovation, including increased revenues or cost reduction
  • how the innovation will affect your productivity and growth, in both the short and the long term
  • how you will protect and exploit the outputs of the project, for example through know-how, patenting, designs or changes to your business model
  • your strategy for targeting the other markets you have identified during or after the project

If there is any research organisation activity in the project, describe:

  • your plans to spread the project’s research outputs over a reasonable timescale
  • how you expect to use the results generated from the project in further research activities

Question 7. Wider impacts

What impact might this project have outside the project team?

Describe and, where possible, measure the economic benefits from the project such as productivity increases and import substitution, to:

  • external parties
  • customers
  • others in the supply chain
  • broader industry
  • the UK economy

Describe and, where possible, measure:

  • any expected impact on government priorities
  • any expected environmental impacts, either positive or negative
  • any expected regional impacts of the project

Describe any expected social impacts, either positive or negative on, for example:

  • quality of life
  • social inclusion or exclusion
  • jobs, such as safeguarding, creating, changing or displacing them
  • education
  • public empowerment
  • health and safety
  • regulations
  • diversity

Question 8. Project management

How will you manage your project effectively?

Explain:

  • the main work packages of your project, indicating the lead partner assigned to each and the total cost of each one
  • your approach to project management, identifying any major tools and mechanisms you will use to get a successful and innovative project outcome
  • the management reporting lines
  • your project plan in enough detail to identify any links or dependencies between work packages or milestones, taking into account the possible impact of further COVID-19 restrictions

You must submit a project plan or Gantt chart as an appendix to support your answer. It must be a PDF, up to 2 A4 pages long and no larger than 10MB in size. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.

Question 9. Risks

What are the main risks for this project?

Explain:

  • the main risks and uncertainties of the project, including the technical, commercial, managerial and environmental risks
  • how you will mitigate these risks
  • any project inputs that are critical to completion, such as resources, expertise, and data sets
  • any output likely to be subject to regulatory requirements, certification, ethical issues and so on, and how you will manage this

You must submit a risk register as an appendix to support your answer. It must be a PDF, up to 2 A4 pages long and no larger than 10MB in size. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.

Question 10. Added value

How will this public funding help you to accelerate or enhance your approach to developing your project towards commercialisation? What impact would this award have on the organisations involved?

Explain:

  • what your project would look like without public funding
  • what advantages would public funding offer your project, for example, appeal to investors, more partners, reduced risk or a faster route to market (this list is not exhaustive)
  • the likely impact of the project outcomes on the organisations involved
  • what other routes of investment have you already approached
  • how this project would change the R&D activities of all the organisations involved

Question 11. Costs and value for money

How much will the project cost and how does it represent value for money for the team and the taxpayer?

In terms of your project goals, explain:

  • your total project costs
  • the grant you are requesting
  • how each partner will finance their contributions to your project
  • how this project represents value for money for you and the taxpayer
  • how it compares to what you would spend your money on otherwise
  • the balance of costs and grant across the project partners
  • any subcontractor costs and why they are critical to your project

3. Finances

Each organisation in your project must complete their own project costs, organisation details and funding details in the application. Academic institutions must complete and upload a Je-S form.

For full details on what costs you can claim see our project costs guidance.

Background and further information

Projects must support a new Impact & Evaluation framework. Successful applicants will be required to collect and report key metrics and data as specified by the programme and in line with the centralised evaluation framework. This will include the collection of both evidence and counterfactual data to adequately support impact and attribution claims.

Projects will be required to work with Innovate UK and analyse and interpret the data using the techniques specified in the evaluation plans and to support the production of reports according to the agreed annual reporting schedule.

Successful applicants will be briefed on the specific metrics and evidence following notification of award. For planning, forecasting and budgeting purposes, each applicant within a consortium should expect to allocate 3 working days to supporting this requirement over the life of the project.

You are also expected to respond periodically following the project’s conclusion, recognising Innovate UK’s obligations, and the benefits of, evaluating impact over time.

This competition complements the technology and modal pathways described in Innovate UK’s Transport Vision 2050. It reinforces Innovate UK’s investment decisions in order to realise the future of transport in the UK and globally.

The Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles

The Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) is a joint policy unit established in 2015 by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the Department for Transport.

CCAV is an expert unit that is shaping the safe and secure emergence of connected and self-driving vehicles, making the UK the best place in the world to develop and deploy the technology while ensuring that all areas of society can benefit from its potentially transformative effects.

We have made good progress to date, leading on: a clear regulatory pathway, joint investment in R&D and an integrated testbed ecosystem. We shall continue by working on the following themes:

1. ensuring safety and security

2. securing the industrial and economic benefits

3. making connected and automated mobility work for society

Zenzic

Zenzic has been established by government and industry to support the integration and co-ordination of the UK CAM ecosystem. It builds on the successful creation of CAM Testbed UK, facilitating early commercial deployments and a strong UK CAM supply chain. Zenzic supports the wider CAM ecosystem through a programme of Insights, Innovation and Collaboration.

Zenzic will support all project participants in successfully delivering their funded projects by helping to build strong consortia to fulfil project scopes in conjunction with Innovate UK-KTN. Zenzic will also provide strategic technical and market insights into the UK CAM ecosystem and supply chain to source high-value opportunity areas.

Working alongside Innovate UK Zenzic will provide project support and work closely with partners to utilise the market insights to find exploitation opportunities and support commercially viable services supported by the UK CAM supply chain.

Zenzic is committed to supporting the success of CCAV funded projects.

Data sharing

This competition is jointly operated by Innovate UK, ZENZIC and CCAV (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 ZENZIC and CCAV and vice versa.

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 ZENZIC and CCAV 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 ZENZIC and CCAV 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.

Find a project partner

If you want help to find a project partner, contact the Innovate UK KTN.

Support for SMEs from Innovate UK EDGE

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.

Contact us

If you need more information about how to apply or you want to submit your application in Welsh, email support@iuk.ukri.org or call 0300 321 4357. Our phone lines are open from 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 as a result 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