The Office of Innovation is pleased to advise that the Invest NI-supported Proof of Concept Fund is available with a submission deadline of Friday 30 November 2012.

As the name implies, Proof of Concept supports the final phase of the transition from laboratory to commercialisation.

To be eligible for proof of concept, projects should be disclosed to the Office of Innovation with patent or other IP protection in place, have initial trials and market assessment done through proof of principle or other funds, and be ready for more extensive technical development and market investigation.  Applications for PoC must be able to demonstrate previous peer-reviewed projects leading up to PoC.

Proof of Concept funds will pay for a research assistant for up to one year and also relevant consumables or technical equipment.  Alongside this, commercialisation monies will support rigorous market assessment and international travel funds to visit potential customers. All proposals must be submitted to InvestNI in conjunction with Office of Innovation.

To register your interest for this fund, please contact the Office of Innovation Proof of Concept co-ordinator John MacRae (j.macrae@ulster.ac.uk).

Although Proof of Concept is a commercialisation fund for relatively mature projects – and not a substitute for research funding – colleagues that have projects that they feel may meet the criteria and are not already disclosed may also wish to contact John regarding their eligibility for support.

More details on the disclosure process and the Office of Innovation commercialisation pipeline can be found in University of Ulster’s Innovator’s Handbook (http://oi.ulster.ac.uk/support-for-academics/innovator-s-handbook).