LSE researchers can access a number of grants and schemes to help you develop and commercialise your idea. To apply to any of the funds, contact LSE Innovation, who can advise you on the application process.

Grant: LSE Innovation Fund

Funding for: Develop and test early-stage innovations from LSE research, e.g. prototyping, market testing. Typically £5-25k.

Grant source: LSE

Supported by: LSE Innovation

Grant: LSE Innovation Challenge

Funding for: Applications based on current or recent LSE research to help meet the challenges faced by the world in a time of rapid change. First prize £10k, 2 x Runner up £5k.

Grant source: LSE

Supported by: LSE Innovation

Programme: ARC Pathway

The ESRC/AHRC SHAPE Catalyst is a £3.9 million programme that helps researchers build ventures from their research and deliver impact at scale. It runs from 2023-2026 and is open to UK researchers from the social sciences, arts, and humanities that want to bring new products, processes and services to market. 

The ARC Accelerator is delivering the SHAPE Catalust through their four-stage programme, the ARC Pathway, which is designed to guide researchers on their commercialisation jourey (click here for an ARC Pathway overview). 

- ARC Discover- Understand the different options for research impact, including commercialisation, and find new audiences for your research. 

- ARC Launch- Explore commercialisation basics, test your idea with external stakeholders and identify the next steps to progress your idea. 

- ARC Accelerate- Receive up to £62,500 at 80% fEC (£50,000 from UKRI) to fund commercialisation activities, fully validate your venture idea, develop a business model, gain key entrepeneurial skills and pitch for funding or investment. 

- ARC Scale- Opening in 2024; formal details to be announced shortly. You will be paired with a mentor with similar experience to your venture and focus on building a team, business, and fundraising. 

The four stages build on each other, so we recommend that interested researchers start their journey with ARC Discover and move along the ARC Pathway to be best placed to apply to the next stages. 

Signups for ARC Discover and applications for ARC Launch and ARC Accelerate are now open on the ARC website! Follow them on LinkedIn and Twitter for updates and rewatch one of the recent application webinars to find out more about the application process and what we are looking for. 

Programme: ICURe

Programme for: 3-month £35K programme for market testing, 100 conversations with possible end users.

Grant Source: Innovate UK (UKRI)

How often: Every few months

Supported by: LSE Innovation

Grant: ERC Proof of Concept

Funding for: Maximise the value of ERC research by funding further work to verify the innovation potential of ideas arising from ERC-funded projects. The maximum budget is 150,000 Eur. 

Grant source: ERC

Supported by: RDT and LSE Innovation

Grant: AHRC Follow-on Fund

Funding for: Unforeseen knowledge exchange, public engagement, active dissemination, and commercialisation activities that arise during the lifespan of, or following, an AHRC-funded project. 

Grant source: AHRC

Supported by: RDT & LSE Innovation

Grant: Knowledge Transfer Partnerhsip (KTP)

Funding for: A three-way collaboration to enable direct knowledge transfer to a company:
- Business partner = access to unique sector knowledge.
- Academic = publications, knowledge transfer.
- Associated = paid job, training, future employment.

Grant source: Innovate UK (UKRI)

How often: Approximately every two months

Supported by: RDT, CE, LSE Innovation

Grant: Innovate UK SMART Grants

Funding for: UK registered organisations for game-changing and commercially viable research and development (R&D) innovation that can significantly impact the UK economy. Led by SME, academia can support.

Course: Innovation to Market

Course for: The Innovation to Market (I2M) course is an MBA for-credit elective at London Business School that is open to external applicants, entirely free of charge. Once at full-scale, the course will welcome around 20 early-career, university-based research scientists per year into the class to study alongside 60 MBA students.