What is the project about?
The CCR £10m Challenge Fund is aimed at re-building local wealth through bringing innovative solutions to tackling some of the CCR’s most urgent societal problems. Working in partnership with Cardiff University and YLab, the fund will invite our public sector bodies to develop challenges and connect with organisations that are able to provide innovative solutions to the challenges identified. This approach aims to draw on the region’s creativity and ingenuity and bring together the public and private sector in order to deliver novel solutions, where no commercial solution currently exists, and to provide a route to market for the solution.
Three priority themes have been identified. The first is accelerating decarbonisation – specifically, in relation to improving air quality, and transport. The second is improving the health and wellbeing of the region’s citizens, looking at issues such as food and health, and food security. The third is supporting, enhancing and transforming communities, with a focus on town centres, high streets and rural communities.
While these are all long-term problems public sector bodies would grapple with, their urgency has intensified following the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. For example, local and national restrictions have raised new questions about how we organise our transport and improve air quality. They have also increased the need to find new solutions to help our struggling high streets and town centres, which have been faced with economic downturn.
The initial call for Challenges is targeted at Public Sector organisations in the Cardiff Capital Region wishing to develop and run challenges.
Public sector organisations may include Local Authorities, Health Boards, and Police Forces etc. However, for challenges to receive funding each challenge must demonstrate scope to:
- Solve the greatest societal challenges
- Create innovative solutions
- Deliver economic impact for the region
- Drive commercial scalable opportunities
- Build local wealth
All challenges will be assessed against the same criteria. Those successful will be able to receive up to 100% of funding to support the development of challenges.
Investment and leverage
Expected benefits and outcomes
Benefits of getting involved include:
- Opportunity to explore creative solutions to local economic challenges
- Investment to find and develop innovative solutions
- Improved local service delivery that benefits from tailored solutions
- New market creation and ability to ‘break through’ public procurement frameworks
- Potential for commercial solutions which can be scaled and sold both locally and beyond
- Local supply chain growth and development
Public Sector organisations in the region are encouraged to attend the virtual briefing event on the 18th November 2020 to learn more about the support on offer and those interested in attending should register on the Briefing Event. Attendees will hear from experienced practitioners from Innovate UK and Welsh Government, as well as leading academics from Cardiff University, our partners in delivering the fund. They will gain an insight into how Public Sector bodies can act as a catalyst for driving Challenge-led Innovation and importantly how the new CCR Challenge Fund package of support can be accessed to help tackle some of the big challenges facing society.
Submission of Expressions of Interest
All those interested in engaging are invited to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI). These can be downloaded here or from the CCR Challenge Fund webpage. Completed EOIs should be sent to the CCR Challenge Fund mailbox at CCRChallengeFund@cardiff.ac.uk.
Challenge Development Workshops December 2020 and January 2021
Deadline for full applications Noon Friday 12th March 2021
Challenge Owner contracts awarded w/c 29/2/2021
Challenges Launch for industry engagement April 2021 onwards
Key partners and people involved
The following organisations are partners in the project: