Collaborate to Innovate (C2N) is an exciting project in the broad life sciences domain which launched in 2016, part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project aims to promote knowledge transfer and commercialisation of innovations.

C2N will be delivered through:

  • King’s College London
  • Imperial College London
  • University College London
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • MedCity

C2N targets SMEs that have ambitions to embark on innovative projects in the applied research/clinical domain, or wish to bring new products and services to market. There is no restriction on the domain of the SME as long as the project has a life sciences/health focus. SMEs should have a challenge/problem that could potentially be addressed by a collaboration with an academic partner.

C2N matches the SMEs to academic research groups with complementary expertise. SMEs may also nominate academic partners they wish to work with. However, the programme emphasises new collaborations. Therefore,

  1. University spinouts cannot collaborate with the university they spun out from.
  2. Companies cannot collaborate with a department that they have collaborated with before. (Please note that this applies even if the proposed collaboration is with a different academic in the department.)

The companies and academics will work on collaborative research projects (CRPs), in domains such as drug discovery, devices, diagnostics and digital health.


  • Have up to £100,000 support available in eligible costs
  • Are typically 6-12 months in duration
  • All costs are borne by the academic partner, conforming to ERDF regulations
  • Up to 15 projects will be supported

Please click here to find out more about the application process.

MedCity, in collaboration with KCL, UCL, Imperial College and QMUL, held the SME Launch Event of the C2N Programme on September 28, 2016. On this date, applications were opened for application on this website.