We are a charity dedicated to improving people's lives through the use of design. We focus on three areas: business, the built environment, and public services. We offer paid-for design support services, deliver partner-funded programmes, and campaign to raise awareness of the value of design.
Design Council Spark
Design Council Spark is a support and funding programme designed to help you turn your bright idea into a commercially successful product.
Over the course of our 16-week programme, we will provide up to 15 finalists with specialist expertise and one-to-one mentoring. Once accepted onto the programme you will receive an initial sum of £15,000 to help you develop your product as well as a chance to pitch for a further share of £200,000. Beyond the programme you will receive a lifelong membership to the Design Council Spark alumni network and access to the Design Council's extensive community.
Design Council has announced Design Council Spark, a new £300,000 innovation fund and accelerator to discover and propel UK talent in the field of new physical product innovation.
This initiative, launched at the Science Museum's new Information Age gallery, seeks to energise UK product design and to develop revolutionary products that solve problems which people face in their everyday lives, building on the UK's rich heritage as a nation of innovators and inventors. The fund is open to submissions from anyone with a brilliant product idea who can work, and wishes to develop their product in the UK. The Design Council Spark investment panel will select a shortlist of 10 products from all submissions, each to receive an initial £15,000 investment. Those selected will join a 20-week programme of mentoring and support, with access to a network of peers and experts in manufacturing, prototyping, user testing, business, investment and finance and retail. All teams will pitch at the end of the programme for the chance to receive one of three further £50,000 investments.
The move is backed by leading British designers including Jane NÃ Dhulchaointigh, developer of the innovative new consumer silicone glue, sugru; Duncan Fitzsimons, creator of the world's first fold up wheel, and wind-up radio inventor Trevor Baylis. Entrepreneur Dhulchaointigh says:
"I'm supporting the Design Council's new innovation fund because I believe in the transformative power of good design. A new product or service which responds to everyday life in an imaginative way makes life easier and even more importantly, it helps us live richer and more enjoyable lives." Mat Hunter, Chief Design Officer of the Design Council, says: "The Design Council is committed to developing and maintaining the UK's global reputation for high quality product design. Good design changes people's lives for the better, it boosts the country's economy, and it enables the UK to compete on the global stage in the 21st Century. We want to ensure that our best, most innovative designers have the money, resources and networks they need to succeed. Design Council Spark will support product designers with targeted advice and support, an injection of funds to get started, and connections to other people at the same stage of product development - which cannot be underestimated."
Design Council Spark is a not-for-profit initiative, in which a proportion of revenues from future sales will be used to replenish the fund, which will continue to support new product innovation.
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