Last chance: apply for A4I funding to tackle productivity problems in UK industry

19 March 2019

Analysis for Innovators A4I
Analysis for Innovators A4I

Businesses can apply for a share of £4 million to connect industry with the UK’s best research scientists & facilities to tackle measurement & analysis problems and improve productivity & competitiveness.

Businesses can submit an expression of interest with their analysis and measurement problems, and the value that solving it would bring to them.

Funding will then be available to successful applicants, provided by Innovate UK, the National Physical Laboratory, the National Measurement Laboratory at LGC, the National Engineering Laboratory and the Science and Technology Facilities Council.

Best explored by scientists
The competition – part of the Analysis for Innovators (A4I) programme – aims to help companies to explore analysis and measurement problems with scientists, for example exploring why a certain percentage defect rate is occurring within an existing production process.

The problem must:
•   relate to the measurement or analysis of some quantities or properties of an existing process, product or service
•   not be solvable by simple ‘off the shelf’ methods or techniques
•   relate to measurement or analysis

The Analysis for Innovators (A4I) competition has been running since 2016 and is now in its fourth round of funding. A4I has already funded more than 100 projects. The current round closes 20th March 2019.

Analysis for Innovators (A4I) is a very different type of programme from Innovate UK’s usual grant funding competitions. It is focused on helping individual companies solve tricky and, perhaps, long running technical problems affecting existing processes, products or services.

The programme’s aim is to help boost a company’s productivity or competitiveness by enabling the UK’s top scientists using their world-class facilities, often otherwise inaccessible, to work with companies to address problems in innovative ways.

Who is involved?
A4I is an investment from Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, alongside funding partners, the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), the National Measurement Laboratory at LGC (formerly known as the Laboratory of the Government Chemist), the National Engineering Laboratory (NEL) and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).

Together the funding partners run some of the most advanced facilities, techniques and technologies available in the world. A4I matches the best UK scientists and facilities with companies that have analysis or measurement problems.

The A4I programme differs from other funding competitions, targeting competitiveness and productivity head on, offering cutting edge R&D, expertise and facilities to UK companies that want to solve an analysis or measurement problem from within their existing business.

Who can apply?
Any size businesses, with any type of measurement or analysis problem, are able to apply. The programme is expected to appeal to manufacturing companies, especially those involved in complex supply chains, but companies applying may be from any sector.

Over 2 phases
The competition will take place over 2 phases.

•   Phase 1 invites expressions of interest to participate. Applicants in this phase can connect with potential partners to agree on an approach to a problem and work together to develop a joint project proposal.
•   In Phase 2, projects will get the opportunity to apply for funding.

Find out more about (including case studies of funded projects) and submit an expression of interest at

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