UK – Switzerland Bilateral: Collaborative R&D

UK registered organisations, in collaboration with at least one Swiss registered business can apply for a share of up to £2 million for research projects resulting in innovative solutions.

Opportunity Details


Registration Opens


Registration Closes



Your project’s total grant funding request must not exceed £400,000. This can cover up to 70% of your eligible project costs depending on business size and project type.


Innovate UK

Share this opportunity

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will work with Innosuisse to invest up to £2 million in innovation projects, opening 17th April 2023.

The aim of this competition is to support UK-Swiss international business-led innovation collaboration. Through grant funding Innovate UK will support UK businesses to collaborate with Swiss counterparts for their mutual global growth prospects.

Your proposal must contribute to the development of commercial products, processes or technical services.

The project must have an obvious advantage and added value resulting from the cooperation between the participants, from the two jurisdictions. These advantages can include:

  • increased innovation capability
  • commercial leads
  • access to R&D infrastructure
  • new fields of application

This list is not meant to be exhaustive.


Your UK project must:

  • have a maximum grant funding request of £400,000
  • start by 1 January 2024
  • end by 31 December 2026
  • last between 18 months and 36 months

UK project partners must carry out the majority of their project work in the UK and intend to exploit the results from or in the UK.

The consortium must include at least one business registered in Switzerland that is a separate, non-linked entity. In order to receive any grant funding and continue as a feasible project, the project proposal must be successful on both sides of the consortium. If selected, UK participants will receive grant funding from Innovate UK and Swiss participants, if selected, will receive grant funding from Innosuisse.

UK participants must be part of an application submitted to Innovate UK. Swiss partners must submit a parallel application to the Innosuisse programme.

All businesses in a consortium must be separate legal and non-linked entities. This is to ensure that projects encourage genuine international collaboration, not internal company research. Linked companies are considered a single entity under the parent company.

Projects should have a balanced contribution of the total eligible project costs among the partners from the participating partner countries. No more than 70% of the total project costs can be claimed by any single partner or by all partners from a single participating country.

To lead a project from the UK side your organisation must:

  • be a UK registered business of any size
  • collaborate with at least one Swiss registered business applying for funding from Innosuisse
  • have at least one research technology organisation (RTO) registered either in Switzerland or the UK as a collaborative partner in the project

Any Swiss registered organisation that joins an application must be a separate legal entity which is not linked to the UK partners.

You must not invite your collaborating Swiss partners onto the Innovate UK’s IFS application platform Their involvement in the project is listed as part of your answers to the questions.

To collaborate with the lead, your organisation must be one of the following UK registered:

  • business of any size
  • academic institution
  • charity
  • not for profit
  • public sector organisation
  • research and technology organisation (RTO)

An eligible UK business can lead on one application and collaborate on one further application.

If an organisation is not leading any application, it can collaborate in up to two applications.


The aim of this competition is to support UK-Swiss international business-led innovation collaboration. Through grant funding Innovate UK will support UK businesses to collaborate with Swiss counterparts for their mutual global growth prospects.

Your collaborative research and development (R&D) proposal must demonstrate:

  • a clear game-changing or disruptive innovative idea leading to new products, processes or services
  • a strong and deliverable business plan that addresses and documents market potential and needs
  • sound, practical financial plans and timelines
  • good value for money, which will always be a consideration in Innovate UK funding decisions
  • a clear, evidence-based plan to deliver significant economic impact, return on investment (ROI) and growth through commercialisation, within 2 to 3 years of the funded project completion
  • clear, considerable potential to significantly benefit the UK economy or national productivity
  • the benefit of participants from the countries working together and how this adds value
  • a clear definition of where intellectual property (IP) can be used and shared between the participants and countries
  • a clear route to market within 2 to 3 years of project completion

Your full application consists of the completion of a joint call document to Innosuisse and a submission of the national applications at Innovate UK for UK partners and Innosuisse for Swiss partners.

If successful, your collaboration must submit the same common consortium agreement including an Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) agreement signed by all partners to Innovate UK and Innosuisse prior to start of the project. A failure to submit this document would make the application ineligible.

Briefing and support

An online competition briefing event was held on Thursday 20 April 2023. Click here to view the recording.

If you want help to find a project partner, contact Innovate UK KTN’s European Programmes team.


Connect with Innovate UK Business Connect

Join Innovate UK Business Connect's mailing list to receive updates on funding opportunities, events and to access Innovate UK Business Connect's deep expertise. Please check your email to confirm your subscription and select your area(s) of interest.