Accelerating Action on Social and Business Innovation for a Greener and Fairer Greater Manchester

In a landmark move towards fostering local innovation, Innovate UK and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) solidified their commitment through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in December 2022. Central to this strategic partnership is the spirit of co-creation between Innovate UK and local leadership to catalyse innovation.

The purpose of the MOU is to delineate shared avenues of cooperation, expectations, and responsibilities to foster growth in Greater Manchester’s innovation ecosystem. By fostering a culture of information exchange, skill-sharing, and collaborative problem-solving, Innovate UK and GMCA can streamline efforts, mitigate risks, and optimize costs, ultimately bolstering the region’s innovation ecosystem.

Central to this partnership is strengthening local research, innovation clusters, and all parts of the innovation ecosystem by connecting people, ideas, and sectors to build partnerships and businesses, attract investment, drive growth and decarbonisation, and create jobs to help Level Up.

To nurture these relationships, Innovate UK and GMCA will convene relevant business communities, academic researchers, local authorities, Higher Education and Further Education institutions.

One of the flagship initiatives under this MOU is the co-created Greater Manchester Innovation Accelerator pilot, where 10 ambitious local projects receive part of £33million of public investment to pioneer innovation in key areas.

Additionally, Innovate UK and GMCA will co-create an Action Plan, covering both social and business innovation, to synchronize Innovate UK’s initiatives with the localised growth agendas of Greater Manchester.

This Action Plan will include the adoption of mechanisms to optimise national and local activities and explore collaborative opportunities including:

  1. Innovative procurement tools and methods to connect SMEs to local major investments.
  2. Expertise and resources to support place-based innovation and the rollout of place-based mechanisms UK-wide.
  3. Piloting novel delivery mechanisms on Innovate UK activities to enhance end-to-end delivery and increase local impact.

In essence, the MOU between Innovate UK and GMCA signifies a paradigm shift towards collaborative innovation, and how focusing on a place can boost innovation that will have a UK-wide impact.


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.