Stage 0

Preliminary research

At this stage you are identifying and developing the opportunity for your idea – researching the need for it, the potential demand and market.

Below is some information about possible funding and useful checklists things to propel you into the next stage.

Progress checklist

1 How ‘new’ is my potential product
2 Can I identify its potential advantages?
3 Will it create an entirely new market?
4 Is it a development of an existing product (providing better performance / value and replacing existing products)?
5 Is it a cost reduction (new product providing similar performance at lower cost)?
6 Is it something that will reposition an existing product to target a market or market segment.

Potential sources of support and funding

These sources of support and funding are most relevant to your innovation from the answers given.

Wellcome Trust

The Wellcome Trust a an independent global charitable foundation dedicated to improving health. Iyts funding ranges from basic scientific research, including social science, to supporting proof-of-concept research and development for new healthcare products. Its innovation funding stream aims to help bridge the gap between fundamental research and commercial application by funding applied research and development projects to a stage where they are attractive to a follow-on funder, such as venture capital firms, industry and public-private partnerships. There are a number of funding schemes, including Health Innovation Challenge Fund and Pathfinder Pilots.
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South East Health Technologies Alliance (SEHTA)

"SEHTA is one of the largest healthcare technology networking organisations in the UK with 1,300 members. It offers three services: Consultancy Plus, Care Review and Cluster Development & EU Networks. SEHTA covers a range of health technology fields, including assisted living, diagnostics, and medtech and smartcare and digital companies, and assists with all stages of product / service development, from ideation to long-term business planning, from customer needs analysis to useablity trialling, and from competitor and political landscaping to partner and supply chain selection."
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Knowledge Transfer Network Ltd

Knowledge Transfer Network Ltd (KTN Ltd) is funded by Innovate UK and is an interdisciplinary UK-wide network of knowledge intensive businesses and academics designed to stimulate innovation by promoting collaboration, best practice and knowledge sharing.There are 15 individual Knowledge Transfer Networks, including a Health Tech & Medicines KTN. KTN Ltd organises sector specific missions to different countries to help connect researchers and innovators in the UK with overseas opportunities. It can help UK organisations access overseas funding schemes and it works closely with Innovate UK on major international funding programmes,such as Horizon 2020.

Open the Knowledge Transfer Network
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Nesta is an independent charity with a mission to help bring good ideas to life, Nesta is a leading innovation think tank, an investor in innovative ventures and an innovation lab testing out new approaches to supporting innovation. It has produced a useful innovation policy toolkit which describes the UK innovation ecosystem, available here:
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Intellectual Property Office

The Intellectual Property Office helps businesses understand how to manage IP. This includes IP online tools.

Go to IPO
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Digital Health London

DigitalHealth London is a collaboration between MedCity and London’s three Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs): Imperial College Health Partners, UCL Partners and the Health Innovation Network. It is supported by the Mayor of London and the Academic Health Science Centres (AHSCs). It aims to help London pioneer the development, commercialisation and adoption of digital health innovation to improve health outcomes. It helps to create and support networks to bring together London’s existing critical mass of digital health expertise, identify digital solutions to meet the needs of patients and clinicians, and build an evidence base of the health outcomes and economic benefits of digital health. DigitalHealth London also helps businesses by tackling issues such as procurement and commissioning. A call will be going out in March 2019 for their fourth accelerator cohort. Successful companies will receive support from September 2019-August 2020.

Digital Health London
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Identify your strengths and weaknesses

Complete these useful quick checks on innovation risk and potential for adoption

Evidence needs and ease of adoption

Try to position yourself in the graphic below by asking yourself: What will organisations gain and what they will lose by buying your innovation.

Opportunistic sells A ‘smash hit’ Sure failures! Long hauls Edit your position

Assessment of project delivery risks

These questions will help you think about the likelihood of successfully bringing your project to the market. Please look at these categories and consider where your project sits on the sliding scale from 1 to 5 (1 = low)

Edit your innovation risk

Your level progress

It is important to identify where your innovation sits in relation to the typical stages of development. Sometimes these are called ‘technology readiness levels’ (TRL). These stages are a systematic way of identifying the maturity of a particular technology. There are variations, but broadly innovation stages are divided into the categories shown.

The "innovation stages" section goes into more detail about each stage

View the innovation stages
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Stage 0 Preliminary research
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Stage 1 Basic technology research
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Stage 2 Feasibility & development
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Stage 3 Demonstration
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Stage 4 Testing & Launch
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Stage 5 Adoption & Spread
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