UKRI Healthy Ageing Catalyst Awards

Join us to listen to a discussion with Dr Tim Shakespeare from Zinc, Dr Laura Booi from Leeds Beckett University and Dr Jac Fennell, Co-Founder of Hug by Laugh.

Streamed on Twitter Spaces on Friday 7th January – Adam Smith hosts a discussion to current support and funding call for the UKRI Health Ageing Catalyst Awards (deadline February 2022 for expressions of interest). Exploring what the awards are looking for, how to apply and talking to a previous awardee and innovator about how they have translated their research and ideas in to products and services with the support of the programmes.

Since the first call for the Healthy Ageing Catalyst Awards in 2020, Zinc and UKRI have partnered to fund entrepreneurial academics who want to translate their research into impactful and scalable products, services and interventions. The Awards are part of the UKRI Healthy Ageing Challenge and the Healthy Longevity Global Grand Challenge, founded by the U.S. National Academy of Medicine. This is a worldwide movement to improve physical, mental, and social well-being for people as they age.

In 2022, Zinc will support its third cohort of researchers to create innovations that:

  1. Allow everyone to remain active, productive, independent and socially connected across generations for as long as possible;
  2. Narrow the gap between the experiences of the richest and the poorest.

Benefit from up to £62,500 in funding and a dedicated programme of support.

UKRI award successful applicants up to £62,500 (fEC) (80% from UKRI, 20% contribution from your host institution) and Zinc offer a comprehensive and proven programme of support, which will help you scale the impact of your research and explore different pathways to impact.

Over 9-months, you will gain access to:

  1. Workshops, talks and coaching sessions with our extensive ecosystem; Office hours with Zinc Fellows;
  2. 1:1 guidance from Zinc’s R&D and Accelerate teams to support the development of your innovation;
  3. User groups, to test your ideas and prototypes;
  4. Multiple opportunities to meet your peers in the Healthy Ageing industry and showcase your project as it develops throughout the programme.
  5. We offer support before you apply via a series of workshops, taking place in December 2021 and January 2022. Building on the success of our 6. Prototyping Problems workshops in January 2021, these new workshops will offer inspiration alongside practical advice about submitting your expression of interest.

For full details and information on how to apply head to the Zinc website.

Zinc Website

Comments 2

  1. Lar

    I’m afraid the UKRI Healthy Ageing Catalyst Awards are not as supportive of ageing health innovation entrepreneurs as the organisers would like to think. Their mindset is stuck in an old paradigm that believes creative innovations in healthy ageing can only come from academics who have been through the system, who are attached to an institution. This is not the case.

    To progress with science in this age we must step out of the academic box and do things differently. There are citizen scientists who haven’t been washed and programmed by the academic system/structures who are innovative and creative. They have brilliant ideas – especially because they haven’t come through the system. These scientists approach things from new angles with fresh eyes and want to help make our world a better place. But your Awards programme criteria excludes these scientists. Imagine the potential if these awards were open to all scientists and self-taught innovators and creators.

    Please review and expand your criteria because you never know, there may be a very enthusiastic citizen scientist who has spent years researching a way to stop dementia progression AND heaven forbid, heal dementia brain diseases. What an idea eh?

    An idea that could help millions of sufferers regain their health and minds and reduce our insane social care costs exponentially. If only this scientist was allowed to submit their idea and research – how they could benefit from the financial and academic mentoring support of this Awards programme. But more importantly, consider the impact of millions of dementia sufferers having an opportunity to heal their brain disease.

    What an idea eh?

  2. Adam Smith

    The UKRI scheme is aimed at academics to encourage them to translate research findings into services, a BRILLIANT idea that i think should be encouraged personally. Sure I would agree that citizen science and ideas come from many many other places, so why can’t we benefit from both? Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer’s Research UK both have schemes to fund start-up businesses where the ideas originate from non-researchers, as so other charities and government departments.


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