Callaghan Innovation’s New to R&D Grant was created to support entrepreneurs at the start of their innovation journey. Those entrepreneurs have formed a business around their exciting new idea or concept, are looking for some initial research and development (R&D) funding and would benefit from starting their own in-house R&D programme.

The grant comes in two parts, which work in parallel:

First project funding:

Applicants put forward a proposed plan and budget for their first structured R&D project to push forward their new idea or concept. This first R&D project often has the steepest learning curve and the most exciting, future defining outputs. It provides vital hands-on experience to use for many years to come.

Building skills and capabilities:

Callaghan Innovation’s scientists, engineers and R&D experts have identified six essential skill and capability areas that innovators should possess to become long-term R&D performers. In their application prospective Grant recipients choose learning activities across these areas that are those most likely to fill skill gaps, directly impact the progress of their idea and enhance their R&D project. Options include a broad range of training courses, workshops, internal assessments, and other forms of learning.

“R&D is hard, and we know how tricky it can be to get those first projects and programmes going,” says Spencer Willis, Callaghan Innovation’s Group Leader for Funding Engagement, who is responsible for the agency’s grants. “But, with some new skills and capabilities, and some of that initial groundwork done, Kiwi innovators can feel more confident that they’ll get to the right outcome as fast as possible for all of their future R&D activities.”

Spencer Willis, Callaghan Innovation.

As is the case for many government grants, applicants will need to secure co-funding. For every dollar spent by a recipient, 40 cents comes from Callaghan Innovation, and the other 60 cents comes from the applicant’s funds, or via private investment. The co-funding supports a maximum total combined costs of $1m (40% = $400,000), covering both skills and capability building and R&D project costs.

As the name suggests, the Grant is open to those that are new to R&D. Organisations that have previously invested in R&D or applied for other government R&D funding are likely to be ineligible.

“The New to R&D Grant is designed to be so much more than just cash for innovators,” adds Spencer. “It’s designed to help create a new generation of R&D performers, all equipped with the skills to be researching and developing exciting new innovations for many years to come.

We’re excited to see what new ideas and concepts ready to be developed into the next big thing will come our way.”

The New to R&D Grant is open now. Visit the Callaghan Innovation website to start your application.

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