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Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund

The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) aims to bring together the UK’s world leading research with business to meet the major industrial and societal challenges of our time.

The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund provides funding and support to UK businesses and researchers, as part of the government’s £4.7 billion increase in research and development over the next 4 years.

The fund builds on the UK’s world-class research base and delivers the science that business needs to transform existing industries, to create new industries and to accelerate commercial exploitation of the most exciting technologies the UK has to offer the world to ensure that scientific investment truly delivers economic impact, jobs and growth right across the country.

Programmes delivered by the fund will be industry-led and powered by multi-disciplinary research and business-academic collaboration .

The challenges

Working together the Government, businesses and academics have identified the biggest core industrial challenges where:

  • the UK has a world-leading research base
  • there is a large or fast-growing and sustainable global market

The six challenges that have been selected to receive fund support so far are:

Healthcare and medicines

£181M to develop first-of-a-kind technologies for the manufacture of medicines to accelerate patient access to new drugs and treatments

Robotics and artificial intelligence

£93m to develop AI and Robotic systems that can be deployed in extreme environments such as occur in offshore energy, nuclear energy, space and deep mining

Clean and flexible energy

£246m to develop world leading batteries, designed and manufactured in the UK, to fully exploit the industrial opportunity of vehicle electrification

Driverless vehicles

£38M to develop the AI and control systems need to drive vehicles autonomously through complex environments

Manufacturing and materials of the future

£26M to develop the next generation of affordable light-weight composite materials for use in aerospace applications

Satellites and space technology

£99M to develop next generation launch technologies and manufacturing and testing capabilities that will allow the UK to construct satellites and deliver payloads into orbit

The second wave of challenges to receive funding will be:

  • Transforming construction
  • Data to early diagnosis & precision medicine
  • Transforming food production
  • Next generation servicesEnergy revolution
  • Healthy ageing
  • Audience of the future
  • Quantum technology

Contact details

Dr Rukmal Abeysekera
Knowledge Transfer Manager

Tel: 01904 321124

Further information

Information for businesses will be managed by Innovate UK.

Find out more about the fund via

View a presentation from Mike Biddle, Programme Director for ISCF