What we fund

i4i funds research in the following areas:

  • Research and development of medical devices, active implantable devices and in vitro diagnostic devices as defined by the relevant EU directives, across all areas of existing or emerging healthcare need.
  • Research and development of technologies or interventions as defined by the current Challenge awards themes
  • Product development required to enable a technology for clinical use; work packages may comprise all aspects around manufacturing, intellectual property protection, freedom to operate analysis and market analysis, business case development, etc
  • Research and development of techniques or technologies from a different industry sector, which could have a potential impact if applied in a healthcare setting
  • Feasibility studies if a technology from a sector other than health is being developed
  • Studies to provide data relating to safety and effectiveness of a device, including first-in-man and pivotal studies
  • Health economic analyses and clinical utility studies, looking at a device’s real-life implementation and use
  • CE marking and other regulatory requirements, including any associated safety trials
  • Activities associated with the adoption of new technology
  • Training associated with the implementation of new technology

There are two streams of i4i funding: Product Development awards and Challenge awards.

Product Development awards support research and development of medical devices, active implantable devices and in vitro diagnostic devices in any area of existing or emerging clinical need. These awards comprise both early and late stages of research and development, including the clinical development of laboratory-validated technologies or interventions.

Projects must have progressed beyond basic research and have demonstrated proof-of-concept. The expected output is an advanced or clinically validated prototype medical device, technology or intervention. Lead applicants may be from academia, industry or an NHS organisation.

Essential requirements for Product Development awards

  •          Any R&D activities must be within the scope of our funding programmes
  •          A minimum of two organisations must be involved.
  •          Lead applicants must be based in England.
  •          Work packages must not include animal studies.
  •          Projects must have progressed beyond basic research and have demonstrated proof-of-concept. 

Challenge awards are based on themed calls in areas of existing or emerging healthcare need. These late-stage awards must comprise the clinical development of laboratory-validated technologies or interventions, requiring minimal preclinical development. Applications must be based on a working prototype or proven concept with a strong evidence base.

Minor or incremental changes to technologies in current clinical use are outside the remit of i4i Challenge awards. The expected output is a disruptive technology with the potential to offer improved outcomes for NHS patients. 

Lead applicants must be from NHS organisations or other NHS service providers.

Essential requirements for Challenge awards

  • Any R&D activities must be within the scope of the i4i Programme
  • Projects can be up to 5 years in duration
  • A minimum of two organisations must be involved from either an NHS Trust, HEI or SME.
  • Applications must include one collaborator from an NHS Trust or NHS service provider.
  • Projects must include first-in-man or later stage trials.
  • Lead applicants must be based in England.
  • Work packages must not include animal studies.
  • Projects must have progressed beyond basic research and have demonstrated proof-of-concept. 

 The next Challenge Awards call will be launching in January 2017.

 Further information can be found in our guidance document.

You can find information on previously funded projects here.