Forming the Innovation Accelerator
The West Midlands Innovation Board (WMIB) is responsible for developing and coordinating the plans for the Innovation Accelerator and supporting the delivery of those plans throughout the pilot period and beyond by deciding the local objectives for the IA, helping select priority projects and monitoring the regional impact of those interventions.
Aligning with the West Midlands Plan for Growth, the Innovation Accelerator will build on our Manufacturing and Engineering strengths and be focused on two key areas:
HealthTech and MedTech
- HealthTech: prevention, monitoring of wellbeing, mental health, and telehealth. Which includes wearables, software applications, data, connectivity, AI (Artificial Intelligence) and in practice management.
- MedTech: equipment, medical devices, machines, diagnostics, software, and tools. Better treatments and improvements on things like laser surgery and managing patient health journeys.
The 4 Ds should be considered - Data, Diagnostics, Digital health, and Devices:
- Data to prevent illness, enhance wellness and quality of life and optimise the effectiveness of interventions, using datasets to design, test and commercialise innovation.
- Diagnostics, personally targeted and digitally enabled care is growing (in part as an effect of the pandemic) and will continue to do so.
- Digital Health, trials of Artificial Intelligence (supported by 5G) and expertise to navigate the regulatory framework.
- Medical device manufacturers are increasingly using AI to better assist healthcare
The West Midlands Plan for Growth describes the opportunity to create additional growth of £400m - £430m by 2030, meaning a further 5,300 to 5,900 jobs.
CleanTech covers a wide range of technologies and applications, and the Innovation Accelerator will support the region to develop its R&D capability and capacity to spark growth and deliver our net zero ambitions.
Clean Tech: products, processes, or services (and associated supply chains) which reduce or eliminate:
- Emissions to the environment
- Use of natural resources (whilst often harnessing sources of renewable energy)
CleanTech is distinct but complimentary to industrial decarbonisation. The West Midlands Plan for Growth covers specialist aspects of CleanTech including:
- Manufacturing of future housing/buildings, with potential to add an addition £220m to £320m and around 3,500 jobs by beating the average growth profile for UK by 1%, through focus on sustainable construction methods.
- Low carbon utilities, with potential to add £420 to £470m and 4,500 jobs by becoming the UK’s leading region in growth profile, utilising existing strengths and productivity, and adopting green technologies at a faster rate than rest of the country.
- Expressions of Interest closed on 1 August 2022.
- EOIs have been filtered to ensure that they align with the overall objectives of the Innovation Accelerator and clearly address challenges in the clusters of focus.
- During August, the WMCA, supporting the Innovation Board, encouraged collaboration, mutual alignment and avoided duplication where possible in the EOIs.
- Following this stage stakeholders were asked to develop their EOIs into fully costed proposals based on IUK criteria, between early September and the end of October.
- IUK assessed proposals in November.
- The Innovation Board and Economic Growth Board decided at the beginning of December which proposals would be funded by the Innovation Accelerator.
- Successful projects began in quarter 1 of 2023 and must be completed by end of March 2025.
If you have any questions related to the Innovation Accelerator programme, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.