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Innovation funding

The University Innovation Fund incentivises universities to work collaboratively to design and adopt innovative new approaches to exploiting the research base that will lead to a significant positive change in Scotland’s already good economic performance.


Seven outcomes have been identified as areas where, over academic year 2017-20, universities will demonstrate progress. These outcomes are:

Outcome one (demand stimulation): working with Scotland’s Enterprise Agencies (EAs), Scottish Government, business networks, Interface, and others, Scottish HEIs will have helped to increase the demand and quality of engagement from businesses and the public sector for university services.

Outcome two (simplification/commercialisation): in partnership with the EAs and Interface, Scottish HEIs as a sector will have demonstrably simplified business access to the knowledge and expertise in Scottish universities.

Outcome three (simplification/greater innovation): in partnership with the EAs and Interface, Scottish HEIs will, at a national level, have made strategic use of their sectoral knowledge to promote greater innovation in the economy (including beyond non-STEM).

Outcome four (entrepreneurialism): Scottish HEIs as a sector will have made a significant and positive change in the way entrepreneurial opportunities are promoted and delivered to students, HEI staff, and businesses.

Outcome five (international): in partnership with Scottish Development International, Connected Scotland and others, Scottish HEIs will have pooled their knowledge and networks, and shared good practice to promote and engage Scotland internationally (operating under Scotland’s International Framework).

Outcome six (inclusive growth and social impact): building on current and good practice, Scottish HEIs will have scaled up their support of the Scottish Government’s ambitions for inclusive growth.

Outcome seven (equality and diversity): building on current and good practice, HEIs will have ensured positive promotion of equality and diversity in staff and all who are affected by the use of the UIF.

These outcomes are aligned with the Scottish Government’s economic strategy, Universities Scotland 5 point action plan and the Scottish Government’s ‘Innovation Plan’ published in January 2017.

Further information is available at Funding for Universities

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