Introducing our Innovation Programme
Innovation encompasses the development of new ideas, products, processes and services (no matter how big or small!) which deliver new approaches to challenges faced by businesses, individuals and communities.
Innovation is central to the Strategic Economic Plan’s long-term ambition to build a more productive North East: stronger innovation delivery will improve our productivity performance and catalyse growth in ‘better’ jobs
Here’s how the Innovation Programme links into the key areas of the Strategic Economic Plan:
We are curating an open innovation programme, Challenge North East, based on global best practice and drawing on existing regional strengths. Open innovation is fundamentally about collaboration with people and organisations. Our aim is to grow the culture of open innovation in the region to increase commercialisation and productivity.
We work with partners across the region, to identify and develop an evergreen pipeline of game-changing regional innovation projects. We support the pipeline projects to produce compelling and robust propositions which are best placed to attract national funding and grow the North East asset base.
Our aim is to accelerate investment into the region by winning a greater share of national innovation funding competitions and supporting private sector co-investment.
We are now calling for expressions of interest for projects to join the Pipeline. To find out more and to submit an Expression of Interest Form, click here.
We support the cohesion of the North East innovation ecosystem in a variety of ways including through the development of emerging projects, providing support through steering groups, collaboration with the Business and Sector Growth team and the North East Growth Hub and engaging regional assets such as universities and catapults to foster collaboration and alignment.
With the North East LEP’s Business and Sector Growth team, we work with partners to lever private funding and have developed a roadmap for increasing the levels of private sector finance invested in the region’s innovative businesses, which is recognised as an area in which the North East falls behind the rest of the UK.
We are testing a novel concept of ‘Innovation Delivery Partnerships’ (IDPs) with regional partners to grasp opportunities in emerging markets in areas of regional strength. IDPs will be self-governing partnerships of businesses and organisations across the stages of innovation cycle. IDPs will focus on specific market opportunities and will support the growth of the North East’s competitive market share in these areas.
In this space we have developed an economic input-output model which calculates the potential economic impact of investment made across a range of innovation and business growth activities. This enables us to demonstrate the importance and benefit of public finding. At a pan-northern level, Innovation Director, Alan Welby, chairs the NP11’s Innovation Group.
Latest Innovation news
In conversation with Gillian Hall, North East LEP Innovation Board Chair, about the LEP’s annual review and the importance of creating an innovation culture in the region
The upheaval of the COVID-19 pandemic has led to increased levels of innovation across the North East. But how do you build on that, and…
Support available to develop innovation projects in preparation for future funding opportunities
North East organisations are being offered support from a team of innovation experts to prepare projects for future funding opportunities. Alan Welby, Innovation Director at…
CHALLENGE NORTH EAST ANNOUNCES £125K FUNDING FOR TOP INNOVATION IDEAS
Ground-breaking solutions to the COVID-19 crisis will become reality thanks to the Challenge North East open innovation programme. Challenge North East called on North East…
Challenge North East: the story so far
Challenge North East is an innovation programme, launched to identify solutions to issues created by COVID-19 and to enable SMEs to develop and test these…
CHALLENGE NORTH EAST LEADS ON INNOVATIVE COVID-19 SOLUTIONS
A challenge that called on North East businesses to generate innovative solutions to the Covid-19 crisis has reached a milestone moment. The North East Local…
How university collaboration, Northern Accelerator, is driving an innovation-led COVID-19 recovery
A collaboration between four North East universities – Durham, Newcastle, Northumbria and Sunderland – Northern Accelerator commercialises research to create sustainable businesses in the North…
In conversation with Dr. Phil Budden, senior lecturer at MIT’s School of Management, about the MIT REAP program
The North East LEP and key partners are currently participating in the prestigious Regional Entrepreneurship Acceleration Program (REAP) led by MIT. Here Dr. Phil Budden,…
The benefits of open innovation
Many people don’t know what open innovation means, but ultimately, it’s just a way of working together to develop competitive advantage, says Alan Welby, director…
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