XClose

UCL Quantum Science and Technology Institute

Home
Menu

Jobs, Calls and Funding

Details of fellowships, supporting funding schemes and jobs at UCLQ will be posted here.

Calls and Funding

Open Call for Innovation Projects in Quantum Technology

We invite proposals for proof-of-concept / demonstrator projects from UCLQ staff and students, in the emerging area of quantum technology. Support of up to £50k may be requested through this scheme, with the option of further funding (up to a total of £150k) through our venture capital partners. A typical project duration is 6 - 12 months. In additional to the financial support, successful applicants will also be offered mentorship to help develop their demonstrators into a business.

Applications will be assessed on a rolling basis, and the call will close once the funds have been allocated, or by Dec 2020 at the latest. Awards will be made to a start-up company set up by the applicants, however, the existence of the company is not necessary in order to apply, and guidance can be offered to successful applicants in doing this. Shortlisted applicants will be asked to deliver a pitch to a panel including technical experts in quantum technology, as well as investors.

To apply, please submit an outline application using the outline form found in drop down below.

Supported by InQuBATE, the EPSRC Training & Skills Hub in Quantum Systems Engineering, the UCL Tech Fund, and IP Group.

Eligibility, condtions, and application form

Eligibility

  • We expect teams to be led by UCLQ students or post-doctoral researchers – the focus is on entrepreneurship driven by early-career researchers
  • Most applications will be from small teams (e.g. 2-4), though these numbers should be treated as a guideline
  • The recipient of the funding will be a new start-up company led by the team. However, the start-up does not need to be legally incorporated at the time of application
  • Funds may be used to support the time of the applicant(s) (see ‘Eligible costs’ below). In this case the FTE of any other studentship or employment of held by the funded applicant(s) with UCL will need to be reduced accordingly. Students must have upgraded from MPhil to PhD status before such a reduction to part-time status can be made.  It is the responsibility of students studying in the UK on a visa to ensure that any proposal is consistent with the conditions of their visa

Conditions of award

  • The award will be contingent on the incorporation of the company
  • Start-ups will be given mentorship throughout the period of the award
  • UCL will not seek to take an equity stake in companies in return for this funding
  • Applicants must provide a final report on the outcomes of the award and the use made of Innovation Fund resources
  • Depending on the level of support sought, UCLQ funding may be supplemented by a venture partner (see below), which come with further terms and conditions

Eligible costs

  • Consumables and facility costs
  • Rent or space costs
  • Patent and legal costs
  • Travel and subsistence, (with clear justification for the technology development)
  • Salary costs for applicant(s)

Possibility of additional funding

Awards may be made in collaboration with UCLQ’s commercial partner investment funds. At their discretion, partner funds may offer additional investment to successful applicants. Such further investment will be on commercial terms and subject to a negotiation with the fund(s); for example, it could be in the form of a convertible note, which can translate into an equity stake in the applicant’s start-up. There will be no obligation on either party to make such an agreement; applicants are strongly advised to take independent legal advice in any negotiation.

Size and duration of awards

  • We expect to fund awards in the range of £25k - £150k per bid, and typically no more than 12 months in duration. Awards over £50k will typically involve the participation of a venture partner (see above)
  • Applicants must provide a roadmap for the development of the technology concept beyond the period of the challenge fund award
  • Intellectual property
  • Foreground intellectual property developed by the start-up under the award will be owned by the company, however, any arrangement for use of UCL facilities and associated cost will have to be agreed by the relevant Head of Department
  • Applicants should identify any background IP owned by UCL (or other organizations) required for the progress of their project. Licensing of any necessary third-party background IP (including UCL-owned IP) does not need to be arranged before an application can be considered. UCLQ will work with applicants to facilitate licensing arrangements with UCL Enterprise and UCL Business

Applications process

  • Awards will be made by a panel made up of technical experts (from UCL) and business/enterprise experts (external to UCL)
  • There will be a two-stage process: (1) outline application following the form below and (2) pitch to the award panel
  • Some feedback may be provided to shortlisted applicants following the outline stage, prior to the pitch, where it is felt this might help strengthen the application
  • There is no closing date, but the call will close once the funds have been fully allocated
  • Completed outline applications should be sent to the Institute Administrator (cian.o'neill [at] ucl.ac.uk).

Outline Application

  1. Elevator pitch: in 50 words or less explain the proposed project and its potential impact
  2. List the team members, including name, affiliation and current position
  3. Describe the strengths of the team – why is this the right team to carry out this project? (max 100 words per team member)
  4. In more detail, what is your idea for a proof-of-concept / demonstrator? (max 200 words)
  5. What will be the main impact(s)of this idea? (max 100 words)
  6. How does this innovation compare to what is currently available commercially, giving key figures of merit? What is your technical advantage (max 200 words)
  7. How will this project lead to commercial success for your business? What will your commercial advantage be? (max 200 words)
  8. What are the key milestones/deliverables for your project and when do you anticipate reaching them? (max 100 words)
  9. Assume your demonstrator project is successful – what happens next? (max 100 words)
  10. Budget – how much funding are you requesting for your project, and what is this for? (max 100 words)

Open call for Innovation fund application form.

 

More Opportunities

If there are no opportunities currently available directly with UCLQ, you can also check for vacancies with the departments affiliated with us.