There are several user experience-focused funding and development opportunities running in H1 2015 which will be of interest to the MEX community. Two are themed around the idea of ‘Better interactions between people and machines’, such as ways of sensing user intent and specific innovations which might improve overall digital user experience. Others include ‘Enhancing customer experience in rail travel’, ‘Enhancing user experience in retail’ and ‘Enhancing user experience using personal data’.
The funding comes from Innovate UK, the UK government-backed body which funds, supports and connects innovative businesses to bolster economic growth:
- Better interactions between people and machines – Feasibility studies. Up to £50,000 per project is available, with a total of £500,000 in the scheme, and it is targeted specifically at micro- to SME-size businesses. Feasibility study funding is particularly suited to exploring early stage and experimental ideas which need proving before attracting additional finance. Registration closes 25th March 2015.
- Better interactions between people and machines – Knowledge Transfer Partnerships. There’s up to £1m available to fund up to 10 Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, where companies can tap into knowledge from research institutions (e.g. universities) and work with specific research associates on ways of enhancing UX. Applications close 15th April 2015.
- Enhancing customer experience in rail travel – Collaborative research and development. Up to £6m in total funding available. Registration closes 15th April 2015.
- Enhancing user experience in retail – Collaborative research and development. Up to £4m in total funding available. Registration closes 6th May 2015.
- Enhancing user experience using personal data – Feasability studies. Up to £2m on total funding available. Registration closes 6th May 2015.
All the details are available at those links above.
In addition, we’re working with Innovate UK to help the MEX community understand these opportunities and foster an ongoing discussion about funding the development of user experience skills in the UK, including some sessions at the MEX event in London on 24th – 25th March 2015.