Key features

  • Support projects from early stage through to near commercialisation

  • Run jointly by the Technology Strategy Board and Research Councils

  • Help for academics and businesses of all sizes

Catalysts logo
Catalysts are run jointly by the Technology Strategy Board and the Research Councils. A Catalyst is a form of research and development funding which focuses on a specific priority area and aims to help take projects from research to as close to commercial viability as possible.
The Catalyst model supports projects in priority areas where the UK research base has a leading position and where there is clear commercial potential. Three levels of funding are usually available, varying according to how close a project is to commercialisation, with applicants able to join at any phase.
Catalyst funding is offered through an ongoing competition.  Individual businesses (and academics where supported), and consortia of businesses and academics, have the opportunity to propose projects which will create new knowledge and future products, processes and services.  
Our current Catalysts are:
The vision of the Government's new UK strategy for agricultural technologies is to make the UK a world leader in agricultural technology, innovation and sustainability. To achieve this, the Government is investing £70m in a new Agri-Tech Catalyst. The Agri-Tech Catalyst has been set up by the Technology Strategy Board and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council. The Department for International Development is contributing £10m to the Catalyst, to support the transfer of technology and new products to developing countries.
This joint Technology Strategy Board and Medical Research Council programme offers funding to innovative businesses who are small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and researchers looking to work either individually or in collaboration to develop solutions to healthcare challenges.


Energy Catalyst

Energy Catalyst logoThe Energy Catalyst will accelerate innovation by providing investment and support at the time, in the way and at the scale innovators need it. It will help stimulate and support innovation at all stages through to commercial readiness and bring the best ideas, processes, products and skills to the UK energy supply chain to make it globally competitive.


Industrial Biotechnology Catalyst

This programme has been set up by the Technology Strategy Board, the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). It will accelerate the commercialisation of industrial biotechnology-derived products and processes. Initial funding of £45m is available in 2014-15.