Over the summer, Innovate UK KTN has launched a landmark platform to connect Innovators with Design.

Design Hive provides a portal into the breadth and depth of the UK’s world-leading design capability. It will enable organisations to connect with designers and help designers to collaborate across disciplines.

It connects innovators across sectors and technology areas with design and innovation effectiveness experts, resources, funding, opportunities and thinking. Design Hive will support people who are new to design as well as those who see thoughtful and considered design as a means to address the many complexities and uncertainties we face as a planet.

The platform has already over 400 registered users and a line up of knowledge exchange, networking and funding information events. 

The platform complements other design support measures such as for example 'Design for Growth' support launched last year as part of the Innovate UK EDGE programme. UK EDGE provides specialist ‘wrap-around’ activities to businesses in receipt of Innovate UK funding to maximise the value and impact of a grant or loan, other innovative high growth potential and scaling businesses that may not need our funding can benefit from Innovate UK EDGE support.

UK EDGE specialists offer one-to-one, bespoke and intensive support and coaching over a number of days with each of the businesses we support over a shorter or longer period, according to need and potential, typically between 5-15 days. Within the support offer, businesses can be referred by their specialist receive one to one coaching and other support in areas including branding, product design, customer insight and working with designers. Among the companies in the first cohorts of Design for Growth, Nyfasi is an example where PDR, leader of Design4Innovation project, supported an innovative idea to bring about the successful product to market. 

Both initiatives are implementation mechanisms of the Innovate UK 'Design in Innovation Strategy' that has been launched in 2020. 

We encourage all to register to the Design Innovation Network and contribute to the vibrant design innovation ecosystem!

The blog post uses materials produced and shared by Innovate UK KTN.