The Young Innovators Programme
The Young Innovators programme, which includes annual awards for young people with creative and ground-breaking business ideas and a high-profile #IdeasMeanBusiness campaign, is all part of Innovate UK’s commitment to changing the world by investing in young people with big environmental, societal and economic ambitions.
Hear from Young Innovators Awards winners
In this video, Young Innovators Awards 2022/23 winners share the most significant milestones the Awards have helped them achieve.
£5,000 financial grant
We help you cover eligible project costs, including travel to meet customers and partners, attending relevant training courses, equipment, hiring office space, or IT support with a £5,000 grant.
Allowance for living costs
To enable our award holders to focus on their business idea, we offer a contribution to your living cost which is paid at an hourly rate matching the UK real living wage for 2 days (15 hours) per week throughout the duration of the award.
One-to-one business coaching
Tailored business support and mentorship, including advice on business planning, strategy, financial planning, media and communications, branding, growing your networks, access to additional funding, pitch training and more.
This year, 94 Young Innovator Awards winners were selected from hundreds of applicants. The winners are tackling some of our most pressing environmental, economic and societal challenges. The range and scope of their ideas is truly impressive. Use the button below to find out more about the individual winners, their business and how the Young Innovators competition is helping their businesses grow.
Creating the first ever microbiome long-lasting mosquito repellent.
The modular vehicle chassis taking electric vehicle technology into new sectors.
Creating biodegradable fruit and veg bags for a more sustainable future.
Transforming the way we consume media by identifying bias in articles.
Reinventing aircrafts to be more accessible and affordable for all.
Developing low-sugar vitamin gummies to reduce the risk of chronic illness.
What are we looking for?
The aim of the Young Innovators Awards is to find the UK’s next generation of innovators – high-potential young people with great business ideas! We are looking for…
- People with great ideas that can be commercialised
- Ideas that address a problem and market need
- Ideas that offer significantly better solutions to existing ones in that market
- Ideas that are ready to be developed into a new business
- People who can become relatable role models to inspire others
Diversity & Inclusion in Innovation
Innovate UK is creating a better future by inspiring, involving and investing in businesses developing game-changing innovations, to build a better, more resilient economy and society.
The UK’s diverse population is a key asset for innovation. However, we know that whilst talent is evenly distributed across the UK, opportunity is not.
As such, diversity and inclusion are at the heart of the Young Innovators programme which forms an integral part of Innovate UK’s 2021-2025 Plan for Action for UK Business Innovation and its commitment to “increase the diversity of upcoming innovation talent and make innovation support more visible, accessible, and inclusive to all.”
We are encouraged that, of our 2021/22 Young Innovators award winners, 49% are female; nearly a third are Black, Asian or from an ethnic minority background; 17% have a disability and the projects cover all regions across the UK.
Young Innovators 21/22 Success Stories
There are many different routes into innovation, and this is clearly illustrated in the stories of our award winners. Read the stories of our 2021/22 Young Innovators to find out how the Young Innovators programme helped them to navigate and accelerate their entrepreneurial journey.
Young Innovators Awards 21/22 - Young Innovators look to change the world
The winners of this year’s Young Innovators’ Awards, announced today by Innovate UK, look set to tackle some of our biggest societal challenges.
Creative Catalyst 2024
Opens: 23/01/2024 Closes: 06/03/2024
UK registered micro or small businesses in the creative industries sector can apply for funding of up to £50,000 with a package of tailored support to grow their business.
Innovate UK innovation loans future economy: round 13
Opens: 11/01/2024 Closes: 06/03/2024
UK registered businesses can apply for loans for innovative projects with strong commercial potential to significantly improve the UK economy.
NATO Women and Girls in Science 2024 challenge
Opens: 08/02/2024 Closes: 21/04/2024
The goal of the WGS24 challenge is to inspire young women in STEM disciplines. Participants will be asked to submit a short research proposal for NATO.
Join the Community today
We are now proud to be supporting a vibrant Young Innovators community. Join the community today to stay in the know.